Towards better models of externalities in sponsored search auctions

N. Gatti, P. Rocco, Paolo Serafino, Carmine Ventre

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

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Sponsored Search Auctions (SSAs) arguably represent the problem at the intersection of computer science and economics with the deepest applications in real life. Within the realm of SSAs, the study of the effects that showing one ad has on the other ads, a.k.a. externalities in economics, is of utmost importance and has so far attracted the attention of much research. However, even the basic question of modeling the problem has so far escaped a definitive answer. The popular cascade model is arguably too idealized to really describe the phenomenon yet it allows a good comprehension of the problem. Other models, instead, describe the setting more adequately but are too complex to permit a satisfactory theoretical analysis. In this work, we attempt to get the best of both approaches: firstly, we define a number of general mathematical formulations for the problem in the attempt to have a rich description of externalities in SSAs and, secondly, prove a host of results drawing a nearly complete picture about the computational complexity of the problem.We complement these approximability results with some considerations about mechanism design in our context.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2016
EventEuropean Conference on Artificial Intelligence 2016 - The Hague, Netherlands
Duration: 29 Aug 20162 Sep 2016


ConferenceEuropean Conference on Artificial Intelligence 2016
Abbreviated titleECAI 2016
CityThe Hague
Internet address


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