Evolutionary Market Agents for Resource Allocation in Decentralised Systems

Peter R. Lewis, Paul Marrow and Xin Yao
In Parallel Problem Solving From Nature - PPSN X, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 5199, pp. 1071–1080. Springer, 2008. Dortmund, Germany.

We introduce self-interested evolutionary market agents, which act on behalf of service providers in a large decentralised system, to adaptively price their resources over time. Our agents competitively co-evolve in the live market, driving it towards the Bertrand equilibrium, the non-cooperative Nash equilibrium, at which all sellers charge their reserve price and share the market equally. We demonstrate that this outcome results in even load-balancing between the service providers.

Our contribution in this paper is twofold; the use of on-line competitive co-evolution of self-interested service providers to drive a decentralised market towards equilibrium, and a demonstration that load-balancing behaviour emerges under the assumptions we describe.

Unlike previous studies on this topic, all our agents are entirely self-interested; no cooperation is assumed. This makes our problem a non-trivial and more realistic one.

title = "Evolutionary Market Agents for Resource Allocation in Decentralised Systems",
booktitle = "Parallel Problem Solving From Nature - PPSN X",
series = "Lecture Notes in Computer Science",
author = "Peter R. Lewis and Paul Marrow and Xin Yao",
publisher = "Springer",
pages = "1071--1080",
volume = "5199",
year = 2008