Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Matt, Nicole and Ruta are organizing an AGT mentoring workshop (AMW) at EC this year on Monday, June 18 (on the same day as tutorials). Here is the announcement:

This year AGT Mentoring Workshop (AMW) is taking place with EC’18 on Monday, June 18, 2018. The primary goal of the workshop is to provide early-stage researchers, students to be specific, the background, both from a technical and mentoring perspective, to start a successful research career in Algorithmic Game Theory.

The workshop will include:
* technical talks covering basics of topics prominent in the EC’18 program.
* Lunch with senior researchers
* mentoring talks + panels on topics like publication venues, internships, academic jobs, etc.

We have limited funding to support full/partial expenses to attend the workshop as well as EC’18. Interested students can apply here. The application deadline is April 27th. We will accept applications past this date, but only applications received on time are guaranteed full consideration.

Please submit the form if you are interested in attending the workshop, regardless if you need funding or not. This will help us get a clear head-count for organizational purposes.

For funding, preference may be given to students early in their carrier who may find it difficult to arrange for funds. We especially encourage applications from women and other underrepresented groups.


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The following announcement is by Yuval Rabani, the chair of IEEE’s Technical Committee on Mathematical Foundations of Computing (that, in particular, runs FOCS).

Recently, many theoreticians have become aware of issues, stories, and rumors concerning sexual harassment within our community, in other CS communities, and more broadly in science.

A number of initiatives, most notably the mushrooming codes of conduct at theory conferences, are already being put into practice.

In consultation among some of the main organizations running theory venues (IEEE TCMF/FOCS, ACM SIGACT/STOC+JACM, EATCS/ICALP, SIAM/SODA+SICOMP) we’ve decided to appoint a joint committee to discuss and propose coordinated policies, procedures, and institutions to deal with harassment and related ethical issues which cut across organizational boundaries. Sandy Irani will chair the committee. Its charter is stated as follows:

“We are setting an ad-hoc committee to draft a proposal for joint ToC measures to combat discrimination, harassment, bullying, and retaliation, and all matters of ethics that might relate to that. Proposed measures may include, but are not restricted to, coordinating policies and guidelines, and setting community-wide institutions for reporting and oversight. The primary goal should be a determination to deter and root out such behavior in the theory community. The issues of false reporting and due process should be taken into account. The committee is expected to conduct the necessary research on existing practices. The committee will submit a report to the appointing organizations by September 30, 2018.”

If you wish an organization be included in the loop, please contact me. If you wish to convey to the committee ideas and thoughts, please contact Sandy or other members as they’ll be announced.

In the meantime, while we are waiting for the committee’s more thoughtful suggestions, here are a couple of simple and potentially effective steps, off the top of my head:

1. If you are harassing someone, please stop.
2. If you are not harassing anyone, please don’t start.

I will gladly contribute to a lively open discussion and react to comments, especially if they occasionally reach my awareness by relaying their existence to my email feed. (Regrettably, I don’t spend all my waking hours monitoring theory blogs.)


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The first Workshop on Opinion Aggregation, Dynamics, and Elicitation (WADE) will be held in Cornell University, Ithaca, NY on June 22, 2018 in conjunction with the 19th ACM Conference on Economics and Computation (EC)


Workshop Theme

Traditional social choice has concerned itself with aggregating discrete outcomes via voting. Increasingly, there is a need to aggregate opinions. For instance, consider the problem of designing the capital budget of a city or country. Or eliciting what trade-offs are worth making to mitigate the effect of climate change. On such issues, there are a spectrum of opinions, most of which are quite complex, and many of which are ill-informed.

At the same time, crowdsourcing and complex polling are in increasing use for subjective opinion: examples are prediction markets, peer assessment, and Bayesian opinion elicitation in the presence of incentives.

This leads to questions like:

  • How can voting schemes be adapted to elicit complex preferences?
  • How should preferences be aggregated so that the outcomes are a fair representation of societal views?
  • Individual preferences are often shaped by networked interactions. How does the dynamics of opinion formation affect the process of eliciting and aggregating opinions?
  • Can we design algorithmic approaches to group negotiation and deliberation for social choice problems?
  • How do we incentivize participation, effort, and truthful reporting in opinion aggregation?
  • Finally, how should platforms and mechanisms be designed to elicit, inform, and aggregate opinions?

The goal of this workshop is to bring together participants from diverse fields that are relevant to such problems — social choice theory, prediction markets, opinion dynamics, and fair resource allocation in order to foster a lively interchange of ideas. The two essential features of work discussed at this workshop are:

  1. The ultimate goal of the problem or model being discussed is to make a single group or societal decision (eg. as opposed to bandwidth allocation or ad allocation where resources need to be split among participants or recommendation systems where decisions are personalized), and
  2. Different participants have different utilities, or subjective preferences.

We invite papers of all kinds — theory, empirical, and experimental — related to any of these aspects. The workshop’s submissions site contains more information about submitting papers or panel discussion proposals.

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The 2nd Workshop on Mechanism Design for Social Good will be taking place at this year’s ACM Conference on Economics and Computation at Cornell University on June 22, 2018.

The goal of the workshop is to highlight work where insights from algorithms, optimization, and mechanism design have the potential to impact social good. In particular, we will focus on the theme of improving access to opportunity. The workshop will feature keynote presentations focusing on economic inequality, online labor markets, bias and discrimination. We encourage submissions addressing these and other domains, such as housing, healthcare, education, civic participation, privacy, and the developing world. The workshop aims to showcase ongoing exemplary work on these topics and to highlight exciting opportunities for future research. Submissions of all types are encouraged, including theoretical or applied mechanism design work, research that solves algorithmic or optimization problems, and empirical research.
Topics of interest for this workshop include but are not limited to:
  • redistributive mechanisms to improve access to opportunity
  • economic inequality and intergenerational mobility
  • mitigating unequal economic outcomes in online labor markets
  • detecting existence or causes of exploitative market behavior in online labor markets
  • the design of algorithms that mitigate bias and improve diversity
  • allocating low-income housing assistance
  • allocating health insurance funds, managing access to healthcare, and pricing medical treatments
  • design of health insurance markets
  • evaluating students, teachers, or schools
  • design of transportation systems
  • market regulations for data and privacy
  • algorithmic solutions to encourage civic participation
  • evaluating fairness in electoral representation 
Submissions will be evaluated on the following criteria:
  • Quality of submission as measured by accuracy and clarity of exposition.
  • Relevance to this workshop and its theme of improving access to opportunity.
  • Novelty of domain: we particularly encourage work on applications that have been less explored within the EC community.
  • Potential for follow-up work in the EC community: those from other communities who feel they fit this criterion are especially encouraged to submit.
Submission Instructions:
Authors should upload a PDF of their paper to EasyChair. There are no specific formatting instructions. Submissions may either be working papers or papers that have been published at an established conference or journal. In the latter case, please include a citation on EasyChair.  In addition to the PDF, authors are asked to upload a 200-250 word description onto EasyChair summarizing the results and their relevance to the workshop. The committee reserves the right not to review all the technical details of submissions. 
Authors may submit papers that are already under review or accepted in conferences or journals. However, papers accepted to this year’s EC will not be considered for presentation at the workshop. There will be no published proceedings.
Important Information:  
  • Submission Deadline: April 21, 2018, 11:59pm AoE
  • Submission page: EasyChair
  • Notification: May 16, 2018
  • Workshop Date: June 22, 2018
Organizing Committee:
Program Chairs:

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On behalf of the organizing committee: Ashish Goel, Jason Hartline, Gabriel Carroll, and Nicole Immorlica.

This year, the ACM Conference on Economics and Computation (EC) will host a festival highlighting some of the best work in economics and computation that typically appears in conferences and journals adjacent to EC. The intention of this festival is to expose EC attendees to related work just beyond the boundary of their current awareness.

We seek nominations for papers that have made breakthrough advances, opened up new questions or areas, made unexpected connections, or had significant impact on practice or other sciences. Examples of conferences and journals that publish papers relevant for our festival include STOC/FOCS/SODA, AAAI/IJCAI/AAMAS, NIPS/ICML/COLT, WWW/KDD, AER/Econometrica/QJE/RESTUD/TE/AEJ Micro/JET/GEB, and Math of OR/Management Science/Operations Research. Please email nominations to agtfest2018@gmail.com. Anyone is welcome to contact us, but we especially invite members of PCs or editorial boards in various venues to send us suggestions. Nominations should include:

  • Name of paper and authors.
  • Publication venue or online working version. Preference will be given to papers that have appeared in a related conference or journal within the past two years, or have a working version circulated within the past two years.
  • Short (1-3 paragraph) explanation of the paper and its importance.
  • (Optional) Names of 1-3 knowledgeable experts on the area of the paper.

Note at least one of the authors of a selected paper will be required to present their paper at EC 2018 and so should be available to travel to the conference, which is taking place in Ithaca, NY from June 19-21, 2018. To ensure maximum consideration, please send all nominations by March 31, 2018.

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Last year I gave a series of lectures covering the latest connections between complexity theory and economics.  Morning lectures focused on the most recent breakthroughs on the complexity of computing equilibria, including Rubinstein’s quasi-polynomial-time hardness for computing an approximate Nash equilibrium of a bimatrix game from FOCS ’16, the Babichenko-Rubinstein communication complexity lower bounds for the same problem (from STOC ’17), and the Hubacek-Naor-Yogev average-case hardness of TFNP (from ITCS ’17).  Evening lectures focused on complexity-theoretic barriers in economics (including joint work with Parikshit Gopalan, Noam Nisan, and Inbal Talgam-Cohen).

I’m happy to report that lectures notes are finally available (from arXiv or ECCC).

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The SIGecom Test of Time Award recognizes the author or authors of an influential paper or series of papers published between ten and twenty-five years ago that has significantly impacted research or applications exemplifying the interplay of economics and computation.

To be eligible, a paper or series of papers must be on a topic in the intersection of economics and computation, including topics in electronic commerce, and must have been first published, in preliminary or final form, in an archival journal or conference proceedings no less than ten years and no more than twenty-five years before the year the award is conferred. Papers for which all authors are deceased at the time the Award Committee makes its decision are not eligible for the award.

The 2018 SIGecom Test of Time Award will be given for papers published no earlier than 1993 and no later than 2008. Nominations are due by March 5th, 2018, and must be made by email to the Award Committee (sigecom-awards-tot@acm.org) with “ACM SIGecom Test of Time Award” in the subject.

Any member of SIGecom may submit a nomination. Self-nomination is not allowed. Nominations must include the following, preferably in a single PDF file:

1. Bibliographic data for the paper or series of papers demonstrating publication, in preliminary or final form, at least ten years and at most twenty-five years before the award year.

2. An endorsement letter by the nominator of no more than two pages describing the content of the paper or series of papers and the lasting contribution, significance, and impact of the work.

3. The names, email addresses, and affiliations of at least two other endorsers. Endorsers, like the nominator, may not be authors of the paper or papers under consideration.

4. A one-sentence statement that describes the contribution of the paper or series of papers.

The two additional endorsers should send letters directly to the Award Committee (sigecom-awards-tot@acm.org) by the same deadline. Each letter should specify the relationship of the endorser to nominees and describe, in 500 words or fewer, the lasting contribution, significance, and impact of the paper or papers.

An unsuccessful nomination can be reconsidered for three award cycles, with the option of updating the original nomination to reflect additional impact. Subsequently, a new nomination must be provided. All matters relating to the selection process that are not specified here are left to the discretion of the Award Committee.

The award, conferred annually at the ACM Conference on Economics and Computation, includes a plaque and complimentary conference registration for each winner and an honorarium of $1,000 to be shared among the winners. The award may not be given if the nominations are judged not to meet the standards of the award.

It is expected that at least one of the nominated authors, if selected for the award, will attend the next ACM Conference on Economics and Computation on June 18-22, 2018, in Ithaca, NY, USA, to accept the award and give a presentation on the work. The award includes complimentary registration but does not cover travel expenses to attend the conference.

The Award Committee welcomes questions from anyone considering or intending to submit a nomination. The Award Committee will accept informal proposals for potential nominees or tentative offers to prepare formal nominations, should they be needed.

On behalf of the 2017 Award Committee:

Tuomas Sandholm (Chair)
Robert Kleinberg
Nikhil Devanur

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