We have recently launched a little website allowing you to experiment with maximal lotteries, a randomized voting rule proposed by Peter Fishburn in the 80s. The idea is to return lotteries that correspond to maximin strategies of the symmetric zero-sum game given by the pairwise majority margins. Some classic impossibility theorems can be turned into complete characterizations of maximal lotteries by appropriately generalizing the underlying axioms to allow for randomization [1,2,3].

The website can also be used to compute winners of many other common rules.




Call for FOCS 2018 Workshop and Tutorial Proposals

  • Workshop and Tutorial Day: Saturday, October 6, 2018
  • Workshop and Tutorial Co-Chairs: Robert Kleinberg and James R. Lee
  • Submission deadline:  August 1st, 2018
  • Notification: August 6th, 2018

On Saturday, October 6th, immediately preceding the main conference, FOCS 2018 will hold a workshop-and-tutorials day.  We invite groups of interested researchers to submit workshop or tutorial proposals.

The goal of a workshop is to provide an informal forum for researchers to discuss important research questions, directions, and challenges. The goal of a tutorial is to educate TCS researchers about foundational material and recent developments in a research area in which they may not already be conversant. Connections between theoretical computer science and other areas, topics that are not well represented at FOCS, and open problems are also encouraged.

Format: The workshop/tutorial day will start at 9am and end at 5pm with lunch from 12-2pm.  It will take place at the Institut Henri Poincaré in the Quartier Latin (Latin Quarter) of Paris, not far from the main conference venue. Organizers are completely free to choose their workshop formats (invited speakers, panel discussions, etc.). Both full-day and half-day workshops are a possibility.

FOCS does not have funds to cover travel expenses or honoraria for invited workshop and tutorial speakers. Workshop and tutorials attendance will, however, be free and there is no separate registration for attending them.

For an idea about previous workshops and tutorials, consult the following links:

STOC 2018:        http://acm-stoc.org/stoc2018/workshops.html


FOCS 2017:        https://focs17.simons.berkeley.edu/workshopAndTutorial.html

STOC 2017:        http://acm-stoc.org/stoc2017/workshops.html

FOCS 2016:        http://dimacs.rutgers.edu/FOCS16/workshops.html

STOC 2016:        http://acm-stoc.org/stoc2016/workshop.html

Proposal submission

Workshop and tutorial proposals should fit into one page. Please include a list of names and email addresses of the organizers, a brief description of the topic and the goals of the workshop or tutorial, the proposed workshop format (invited talks, contributed talks, panel, etc.), and proposed or tentatively confirmed speakers if known.  Please also indicate the preferred length of time for your workshop or tutorial (full day or half day). Feel free to contact the Workshop and Tutorial Co-Chairs at the email address below if you have any questions.

Submission deadline

Proposals should be submitted by August 1st via email to focs2018workshops@gmail.com.  Proposers will be notified by August 6th whether their proposals have been accepted.

via Will quantum communication make us more cooperative?

Guest post from Nikhil Devanur:

Pinyan Lu and I were the PC chairs for WINE 2017, and we decided to conduct an experiment. We asked the PC members to score the submissions in the same way they would score an EC 2017 submission. In fact, we sent them the instructions that were given to the PC for EC 2017 and asked them to follow the same guidelines.

Right off the bat, there is the question of how well these instructions were followed. We sent these instructions multiple times, and yet some PC members seem to have ignored it initially. This would invariably come up during discussions. Someone would ask, “Is this EC scale, or WINE scale”, and every now and then there would be a “Doh! I forgot”.

With that aside, I want to present the results of this experiment. Moshe Babaioff kindly gave me the statistics for EC submissions, so we can compare. The key quantity of interest is of course, how do the submission qualities differ. We all know EC gets stronger submissions, but by how much? We sorted the papers into the following buckets, and compared the percentage of submissions in each bucket. The scoring scale for EC was from 1 to 7. Here’s the result.

Average score EC WINE
6+ 6% 0%
5.5 to 6 9% 3%
5 to 5.5 17% 14%
4.5 to 5 14% 11%
4 to 4.5 11% 19%
3 to 4 27% 38%
1 to 3 16% 15%

This table doesn’t tell the whole story, so I did something else: I added 0.5 to the average of each WINE paper, and then calculated the CDF. Here’s what that looks like.

Average score EC WINE + 0.5
6+ 6% 3%
5.5+ 16% 17%
5+ 32% 28%
4.5+ 47% 48%
4+ 58% 65%
3+ 84% 89%
1+ 100% 100%

Now you can see that the two columns are very close to each other. What this tells me is that there is about a 0.5 to 1 point difference between EC and WINE submissions, on a scale of 1 to 7. (My guess is that this would hold even after taking into consideration a bit of grade inflation in the experiment, which is hard to measure.)

Other than this experiment, here is some feedback that I wanted to give to the community.

  1. Historically, WINE has been focused on the CS theory side of AGT, but there is no good reason to continue this. We made a conscious effort to change this and attract all AGT work, including what is typically done in AI and OR communities, as well as experimental work. We said this explicitly in the CFP, and I tried to have the PC represent this as well. I think we got a more diverse set of submissions, especially from the OR community. Several members from OR were attending WINE for the first time, and the feedback from them was that we should publicize WINE more to the OR community. I hope this trend continues, and we see virtually no difference between EC and WINE in terms of topics of relevance.
  2. WINE has been using Springer for publishing the proceedings and we were not quite happy with them. One, we had ordered some number of hard copies of the proceedings, with the idea that they would be made available on a shared basis at the conference location. These were never delivered. Springer was also supposed to sponsor a monetary reward for the best paper, which they never sent. (We gave the reward out of other sponsorship money.) I would recommend seriously considering alternate publishers, including open access publishers.
  3. This has been said before, but one of the most painful aspects of organizing WINE is the need to be budget balanced each year. There is no rolling bank account, and if for some reason the balance goes red in a year, that money has to come out of the PC chairs/local organizers!! This leads to a lot of anxiety and conservative actions in terms of how the sponsorship money is used.

There were other interesting proposals that came up in the WINE business meeting, but I chose not to include any of those so that this blog post is as short as possible. You can watch a recording of this (as well as that of all the talks) here:


Finally, I want to give a shout out once again to the local organizers of WINE 2017. I got uniformly and overwhelmingly positive feedback from many of the attendees that this was one of the most enjoyable conferences they had attended. The local organizers (Y. Narahari and his group at the IISc, Bangalore) get all the credit for this.

From the EC’18 local arrangements committee (Eva Tardos, David Easley, Bobby Kleinberg): We’ve started hearing that some flights to Ithaca near the start of EC’18 are running out of seats. This prompted the following message about travel advice, which is also posted on the EC’18 home page.

Travel advice for flying to Ithaca: Flying to Ithaca is convenient but flights can be expensive, and can fill up. Alternate options include Syracuse (60 miles away), Elmira airport (37 miles away), Binghamton airport (40 miles away), and even Rochester (100 miles away). Syracuse and Rochester both have many more flights than Ithaca, and Lyft and Uber is available in our area.

We set up a google sheet to help participants coordinate travel to Ithaca from the neighboring airports.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: Early registration for the EC 2018 conference ends on May 17, two days from now. After that, the cost of registration increases by $100 for the conference (or $50 if you’re a student), $25 for the workshops, $25 for the tutorials.

If you’re planning to attend EC but you haven’t registered yet, take a moment to visit the registration site now. It’s quick and easy to register!


The organizing committee is delighted to invite you to contribute to NetEcon 2018, held in conjunction with ACM SIGMETRICS 2018, on June 18, 2018, at Irvine, California, USA.

The emergence of the Internet as a global platform for computation and communication has sparked the development and deployment of many large-scale networked systems. Often these systems involve multiple stakeholders with divergent or even competing interests.  Unmitigated selfish behavior in these systems can lead to high inefficiency or even complete collapse. Research interest in the application of economic and game-theoretic principles to the design and analysis of networked systems has grown in recent years.

The aim of NetEcon is to foster discussions on the application of economic and game-theoretic models and principles to address challenges in the development of networks and network-based applications and services. The NetEcon Workshop also seeks to promote multi-disciplinary investigations in the role of incentives in communication and computation. NetEcon was established in 2006 (succeeding the P2PECON, IBC and PINS workshops) and merged with the W-PIN workshop in 2013.

We invite submission of extended abstracts describing original research on theoretical/methodological contributions or on applications to cases of interest. It is our hope that NetEcon will serve as a feeder workshop, with expanded and more polished versions of the NetEcon extended abstracts submitted to major conferences and refereed journals of the relevant research communities.

Important Dates

Submission deadline (firm): April 30, 2018
Notification to authors: May 22, 2018
Camera ready version due: June 4, 2018
Workshop at Irvine, CA: June 18, 2018

Invited Speakers

Jacob LaRiviere, Microsoft
Vijay Vazirani, University of California Irvine
Adam Wierman, California Institute of Technology


Topics of interest to NetEcon’18 include but are not restricted to:

  • Pricing of resources in communication networks, grids, and cloud computing
  • Pricing of information goods and services; copyright issues, effect of network externalities (e.g., in social networks)
  • Economic issues in universal broadband access; economics of interconnection and peering
  • Effects of market structure and regulations (e.g., network neutrality, differential pricing and zero rating)
  • Economics of network security and privacy; valuation of personal data
  • Auctions with applications to networks: spectrum auctions, auction-based marketplaces for network and cloud resources
  • Incentive mechanisms for networks: peer-to-peer systems, clouds, wireless networks, spam prevention, security
  • Economics issues in E-commerce systems
  • Methods for engineering incentives and disincentives (e.g., reputation, trust, control, accountability, anonymity)
  • Empirical studies of strategic behavior (or the lack thereof) in existing, deployed systems
  • Design of incentive-aware network architectures and protocols
  • Game-theoretic models and techniques for network economics: large games, learning, mechanism design, interaction of game theory and information theory or queuing theory, information exchange, diffusion, dynamics of cooperation and network formation, trades in social and economic networks
  • Algorithmic mechanism design for network systems
  • Critiques of existing models and solution concepts, as well as proposals of better models and solution concepts

Studies of open collaboration, peer production, crowdsourcing, and human computation.

Information about previous NetEcon workshops can be accessed at  http://netecon.eurecom.fr/

Submission Formatting Guidelines & Proceedings

Submissions must be in the form of extended abstracts of at most 6 pages in the standard two-column format of ACM proceedings (including all figures, tables, references, etc.) containing all important results to allow evaluation of the novelty and scope of the contribution. In case 6 pages are not sufficient to provide enough information (e.g., proofs) to properly substantiate the paper’s results, we encourage the authors to provide supplementary material either as a clearly marked appendix (without page limit) or by including a link to the full version of their extended abstract. Such supplementary material will, however, be read only at the discretion of the PC members and will not appear in the proceedings in case of acceptance.

Papers should be submitted through the submission website:

Note that authors for whom publication of a 6-page extended abstract in the NetEcon proceedings would preclude later publication of an expanded version in the relevant venue may elect to contribute only a one-page abstract of their submitted extended abstract to the NetEcon proceedings. Such an abstract should include the URL of a working paper or preprint that contains the main results presented at the NetEcon workshop. Authors can make this decision after receiving a notice of acceptance.

The workshop proceedings will be published by ACM and available through the ACM Digital Library (DL). Authors will need to assign publication rights to ACM either in the form of a copyright assignment or a license grant as described on ACM’s copyright policy page. In addition, a table-of-content of the workshop’s papers will be posted that will offer permanent free access to the DL version of the papers using the ACM OpenTOC service.


Steering Committee

John Chuang, University of California Berkeley
Nick Feamster, Princeton University
Joan Feigenbaum, Yale University
Daniel Grosu, Wayne State University
Patrick Loiseau, Univ. Grenoble Alpes and Max Planck Institute for Software Systems — chair
Paul Spirakis, University of Liverpool and Computer Technology Institute & Press “Diophantus”
R. Srikant, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Milan Vojnovic, London School of Economics
Jean Walrand, University of California Berkeley

PC chairs

Ian Kash, University of Illinois at Chicago
John C.S. Lui, The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Technical Program Committee

Siddhartha Banerjee, Cornell University
Liad Blumrosen, Hebrew University
Yang Cai, McGill University
Sofia Ceppi, PROWLER.io
Augustin Chaintreau, Columbia University
kc Claffy, CAIDA, University of California San Diego
Costas Courcoubetis, SIngapore University of Technology and Design
Amogh Dhamdhere, CAIDA, University of California San Diego
Constantine Dovrolis, Georgia Institute of Technology
Paul Duetting, London School of Economics
David Easley, Cornell University
Rachid El-Azouzi, CERI, Universite d’Avignon
Hu Fu, The University of British Columbia
Jens Grossklags, Technical University of Munich
Roch Guerin, Washington University in Saint Louis
Nidhi Hegde, Nokia Bell Labs
Michael Honig, Northwestern University
Jianwei Huang, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Nicole Immorlica, Microsoft Research
Stratis Ioannidis, Northeastern University
Krisnamurthy Iyer, Cornell University
Carlee Joe-Wong, Carnegie Mellon University
Vijay Kamble, University of Illinois at Chicago
Scott Kominers, Harvard University
Mingyan Liu, University of Michigan
Patrick Loiseau, Univ. Grenoble Alpes and Max Planck Institute for Software Systems
Brendan Lucier, Microsoft Research
Richard Ma, National University of Singapore
Patrick Maille, Telecom Bretagne
Reshef Meir, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology
John Musacchio, University of California, Santa Cruz
Thanh Nguyen, Purdue University
Andrew Odlyzko, University of Minnesota
Sigal Oren, Ben-Gurion University
Renato Paes Leme, Google
Michael Schapira, Hebrew University
Grant Schoenebeck, University of Michigan
Nisarg Shah, University of Toronto
David Starobinski, Boston University
Nicolas Stier, Facebook
Adrian Vetta, McGill University
Steven Weber, Drexel University
Matt Weinberg, Princeton University

Additional Information

For more information, please visit the workshop website: