License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license (CC BY 3.0)
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DOI: 10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2018.108
URN: urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-91124
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Chen, Jing ; Li, Bo ; Li, Yingkai ; Lu, Pinyan

Brief Announcement: Bayesian Auctions with Efficient Queries

LIPIcs-ICALP-2018-108.pdf (0.3 MB)


Generating good revenue is one of the most important problems in Bayesian auction design, and many (approximately) optimal dominant-strategy incentive compatible (DSIC) Bayesian mechanisms have been constructed for various auction settings. However, most existing studies do not consider the complexity for the seller to carry out the mechanism. It is assumed that the seller knows "each single bit" of the distributions and is able to optimize perfectly based on the entire distributions. Unfortunately this is a strong assumption and may not hold in reality: for example, when the value distributions have exponentially large supports or do not have succinct representations.
In this work we consider, for the first time, the query complexity of Bayesian mechanisms. We only allow the seller to have limited oracle accesses to the players' value distributions, via quantile queries and value queries. For a large class of auction settings, we prove logarithmic lower-bounds for the query complexity for any DSIC Bayesian mechanism to be of any constant approximation to the optimal revenue. For single-item auctions and multi-item auctions with unit-demand or additive valuation functions, we prove tight upper-bounds via efficient query schemes, without requiring the distributions to be regular or have monotone hazard rate. Thus, in those auction settings the seller needs to access much less than the full distributions in order to achieve approximately optimal revenue.

BibTeX - Entry

  author =	{Jing Chen and Bo Li and Yingkai Li and Pinyan Lu},
  title =	{{Brief Announcement: Bayesian Auctions with Efficient Queries}},
  booktitle =	{45th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and  Programming (ICALP 2018)},
  pages =	{108:1--108:4},
  series =	{Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)},
  ISBN =	{978-3-95977-076-7},
  ISSN =	{1868-8969},
  year =	{2018},
  volume =	{107},
  editor =	{Ioannis Chatzigiannakis and Christos Kaklamanis and D{\'a}niel Marx and Donald Sannella},
  publisher =	{Schloss Dagstuhl--Leibniz-Zentrum fuer Informatik},
  address =	{Dagstuhl, Germany},
  URL =		{},
  URN =		{urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-91124},
  doi =		{10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2018.108},
  annote =	{Keywords: The complexity of Bayesian mechanisms, quantile queries, value queries}

Keywords: The complexity of Bayesian mechanisms, quantile queries, value queries
Collection: 45th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2018)
Issue Date: 2018
Date of publication: 04.07.2018

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