Declarative Specification of Fault Tolerant Auction Protocols: The English Auction Case Study

Nicola Dragoni, Mauro Gaspari

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    Auction mechanisms are nowadays widely used in electronic commerce Web sites for buying and selling items among different users. The increasing importance of auction protocols in the negotiation phase is not limited to online marketplaces. In fact, the wide applicability of auctions as resource‐allocation and negotiation mechanisms have also led to a great deal of interest in auctions within the agent community. A challenging issue for agents operating in open Multiagent Systems (such as the emerging semantic Web infrastructure) concerns the specification of declarative communication rules which could be published and shared allowing agents to dynamically engage well‐known and trusted negotiation protocols. To cope with real‐world applications, these rules should also specify fault tolerant patterns of interaction, enabling negotiating agents to interact with each other tolerating failures, for instance terminating an auction process even if some bidding agents dynamically crash. In this paper, we propose an approach to specify fault tolerant auction protocols in open and dynamic environments by means of communication rules dealing with crash failures of agents. We illustrate these concepts considering a case study about the specification of an English Auction protocol which tolerate crashes of bidding agents and we discuss its properties.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalComputational Intelligence
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)617-641
    Publication statusPublished - 2012


    • Declarative specification of market mechanisms
    • Rule based specification
    • Open dynamic multiagent systems
    • English Auction protocol
    • Fault tolerant agent communication


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