Fifth International Workshop on Computational Social Choice
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 23-25, 2014
Eric Budish (University of Chicago)
Title: Efficient and Fair Course Allocation: Theory, Data, Experiments, and Practical Implementation
Combinatorial assignment – e.g., assigning students to schedules of courses – is well known to be a hard problem in market design. The extant theory consists mainly of impossibility theorems and the mechanisms in practice are known to have serious flaws concerning fairness, incentives, or both. In this talk I will discuss a new solution to this problem – approximate competitive equilibrium from equal incomes (CEEI). I will give the theoretical case for CEEI, discuss empirical support from data and an experiment, and describe its recent practical implementation at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. The talk will be based off of three papers: Budish and Cantillon, “The Multi-Unit Assignment Problem: Theory and Evidence from Course Allocation at Harvard” (2012, AER); Budish, “The Combinatorial Assignment Problem: Approximate Competitive Equilibrium from Equal Incomes” (2011, JPE), and Budish and Kessler, “Changing the Course Allocation Mechanism at Wharton” (2014, wp).
Edward Felten (Princeton University)
Title: From Choice to Consensus
In addition to getting the "right" answer, many social choice applications must also generate a public consensus that the derived answer is good, or at least that the announced mechanism operated as specified. For example, an election must aggregate the votes correctly, and it must also convince skeptical, non-expert outsiders that the announced result is the correct result of applying election procedures to the votes cast by voters; and it must do this despite ballot secrecy requirements. This talk will discuss how to adapt choice mechanisms to enhance their support for consensus, using examples from electronic voting and cryptocurrencies.
Jean-Francois Laslier (CNRS and Paris School of Economics)
The talk presents some observations, and many open questions, on the problem of choosing representatives.