How Computer Science Informs Modern Auction Design

May 13, 2016, Broida 1640

Tim Roughgarden

Stanford University, Computer Science


Economists have studied the theory and practice of auctions for decades. How can computer science contribute? Using the upcoming (March 29, 2016) U.S. FCC double-auction for wireless spectrum as a case study, I'll illustrate the many answers: novel auction formats, algorithms for NP-hard problems, approximation guarantees for simple auctions, and communication complexity-based impossibility results.

Speaker's Bio

Tim Roughgarden is an Associate Professor of Computer Science and (by courtesy) Management Science and Engineering at Stanford University. He received a BS in Applied Mathematics from Stanford in 1997, and a PhD in Computer Science from Cornell in 2002.

His research interests include the many connections between computer science and economics, as well as the design, analysis, and applications of algorithms. For his research, he has been awarded the ACM Grace Murray Hopper Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the Shapley Lecturership of the Game Theory Society, the Social Choice and Welfare Prize, INFORM’s Optimization Prize for Young Researchers, the Mathematical Programming Society’s Tucker Prize, and the EATCS-SIGACT Gödel Prize.