Abstracting and Verifying Strategy-Proofness for Auction Mechanisms

Emmanuel M Tadjouddine, Frank Guerin, Wamberto Vasconcelos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Citations (Scopus)


We are interested in finding algorithms which will allow an agent roaming between different electronic auction institutions to automatically verify the game-theoretic properties of a previously unseen auction protocol. A property may be that the protocol is robust to collusion or deception or that a given strategy is optimal. Model checking provides an automatic way of carrying out such proofs. However it may suffer from state space explosion for large models. To improve the performance of model checking, abstractions were used along with the Spinmodel checker. We considered two case studies: the Vickrey auction and a tractable combinatorial auction. Numerical results showed the limits of relying solely on Spin. To reduce the state space required by Spin, two property-preserving abstraction methods were applied: the first is the classical program slicing technique, which removes irrelevant variables with respect to the property; the second replaces large data, possibly infinite values of variables with smaller abstract values. This enabled us to model check the strategy-proofness property of the Vickrey auction for unbounded bid range and number of agents.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDeclarative Agent Languages and Technologies VI
Subtitle of host publication6th International Workshop, DALT 2008, Estoril, Portugal, May 12, 2008, Revised Selected and Invited Papers
EditorsMatteo Baldoni, Tran Cao Son, M. Birna van Riemsdijk, Michael Winikoff
Place of PublicationHeidelberg, Germany
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)3540939199, 978-3540939191
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jan 2009
Event6th International Workshop, DALT 2008 - Estoril, Portugal
Duration: 12 May 200812 May 2008

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference6th International Workshop, DALT 2008


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