We consider the coalition structure generation (CSG) problem on synergy graphs, which arises in many practical applications where communication constraints, social or trust relationships must be taken into account when forming coalitions. We propose a novel representation of this problem based on the concept of edge contraction, and an innovative branch and bound approach (CFSS), which is particularly efficient when applied to a general class of characteristic functions. This new model provides a non-redundant partition of the search space, hence allowing an effective parallelisation. We evaluate CFSS on two benchmark functions, the edge sum with coordination cost and the collective energy purchasing functions, comparing its performance with the best algorithm for CSG on synergy graphs: DyCE. The latter approach is centralised and cannot be efficiently parallelised due to the exponential memory requirements in the number of agents, which limits its scalability (while CFSS memory requirements are only polynomial). Our results show that, when the graphs are very sparse, CFSS is 4 orders of magnitude faster than DyCE. Moreover, CFSS is the first approach to provide anytime approximate solutions with quality guarantees for very large systems (i.e., with more than 2700 agents).

Anytime Coalition Structure Generation on Synergy Graphs

Bistaffa, Filippo;FARINELLI, Alessandro;
2014

Abstract

We consider the coalition structure generation (CSG) problem on synergy graphs, which arises in many practical applications where communication constraints, social or trust relationships must be taken into account when forming coalitions. We propose a novel representation of this problem based on the concept of edge contraction, and an innovative branch and bound approach (CFSS), which is particularly efficient when applied to a general class of characteristic functions. This new model provides a non-redundant partition of the search space, hence allowing an effective parallelisation. We evaluate CFSS on two benchmark functions, the edge sum with coordination cost and the collective energy purchasing functions, comparing its performance with the best algorithm for CSG on synergy graphs: DyCE. The latter approach is centralised and cannot be efficiently parallelised due to the exponential memory requirements in the number of agents, which limits its scalability (while CFSS memory requirements are only polynomial). Our results show that, when the graphs are very sparse, CFSS is 4 orders of magnitude faster than DyCE. Moreover, CFSS is the first approach to provide anytime approximate solutions with quality guarantees for very large systems (i.e., with more than 2700 agents).
978-1-4503-2738-1
Coalition formation; Networks; Graphs; Collective energy purchasing
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/723161
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