Clark School Home UMD
ECE

ECE News Story

Richard La Receives NSF Grant for Designing Network Pricing Mechanisms

Richard La Receives NSF Grant for Designing Network Pricing Mechanisms

Associate Professor Richard La (ECE/ISR) has received a National Science Foundation Theoretical Foundations grant for "Network pricing with uncertainty: risk aversion and incomplete information." The three-year, $300K grant will begin to identify suitable frameworks for designing efficient and fair network pricing mechanisms.

Abstract
Designing suitable network pricing mechanisms is important for both (i) recovering the cost of providing existing network services and (ii) encouraging deployment of new services and expansion of network capacities. Since service providers are often selfish private entities, the problem of network pricing is studied using tools from economics, in particular, game theory.

When there exists uncertainty regarding the payoff (i.e., profit) of the service providers, called players, recent findings show that risk averse players can behave very differently and change the interaction among the players considerably. As a result, even a pricing scheme that seems rather natural can provide them with an incentive to lie about their private information. This in turn causes a loss in the overall benefit and a significant drop in the profits to the players, discouraging the deployment of new services. Thus, this calls for a careful look at the consequences of uncertainty in payoffs and risk aversion by players on the overall social welfare and the payoffs to the players.

The goal of the project is to take the first step towards identifying suitable frameworks for designing efficient and fair network pricing mechanisms: The first part of the project will carry out a thorough investigation of the impacts of uncertainty in payoffs of the players and risk averse players on likely equilibria in a set of well formulated and targeted scenarios and their implications on the design of pricing mechanisms. The second part will examine how much of social welfare can be lost due to the selfish nature of the players and the uncertainty and aims to find suitable bounds when possible.

Expected outcomes from the project will help service providers identify more suitable pricing schemes that will encourage the deployment of new services through fair profit sharing and improved efficiency. This will promote collaboration among selfish service providers and bring more network services and lower prices to the consumers, while increasing the overall social benefits/welfare.

Related Articles:
Transportation Electrification REU in Full Swing at UMD
Researchers part of two NSF Neural & Cognitive Systems grants worth more than $1.2 million
Alumnus Ravi Tandon receives NSF CAREER Award
Alumnus Aswin Sankaranarayanan wins NSF CAREER Award
TRX Systems to Exhibit at NSF's The Arc of Science in Washington, DC
Papamanthou Co-Organizes Workshop Focused on Secure Data Management Systems
JaJa Connects UMD Experts with NSF South Big Data Hub Resources
UMD Researchers Creating First Onboard Fast-Charging System for Electric Vehicles
NSF Funds Novel Research to Create Scalable Wireless Networking, Averting Usage Crisis
Dachman-Soled Wins NSF Career Award

July 21, 2009


Prev   Next

Current Headlines

Watch the Clark School's Total Eclipse Live Stream at 2:40 p.m.

Clark School Participates in Solar Eclipse

QUEST Students Tackle Brisbane Ferry Challenge

Team of Researchers from UMD, Duke, and Stanford Awarded $2 Million Dollar EFRI Grant to Study Quantum Communication Networks

Ramirez Recognized as Provost’s Professional Academic Advisor of the Year

Researchers part of two NSF Neural & Cognitive Systems grants worth more than $1.2 million

FPE Professor Peter Sunderland Designated PI on Upcoming NIST and NSF Projects

Intern Spotlight: Vishnu Chandrasenan

News Resources

Return to Newsroom

Search News

Archived News

Events Resources

Events Calendar

Additional Resources

UM Newsdesk

Faculty Experts