@inproceedings{77639c62d57641b6b6c6cabd00876c10,

title = "Multi-agent Contracts",

abstract = "We study a natural combinatorial single-principal multi-agent contract design problem, in which a principal motivates a team of agents to exert effort toward a given task. At the heart of our model is a reward function, which maps the agent efforts to an expected reward of the principal. We seek to design computationally efficient algorithms for finding optimal (or near-optimal) linear contracts for reward functions that belong to the complement-free hierarchy. Our first main result gives constant-factor approximation algorithms for submodular and XOS reward functions, with value and demand oracles, respectively. It relies on an unconventional use of {"}prices{"}and (approximate) demand queries for selecting the set of agents that the principal should contract with, and exploits a novel scaling property of XOS functions and their marginals, which may be of independent interest. Our second main result is an ω(n) impossibility for settings with n agents and subadditive reward functions, even with demand oracle access. A striking feature of this impossibility is that it applies to subadditive functions that are constant-factor close to submodular. This presents a surprising departure from previous literature, e.g., on combinatorial auctions.",

keywords = "XOS, contract theory, moral hazard, submodularity",

author = "Paul D{\"u}tting and Tomer Ezra and Michal Feldman and Thomas Kesselheim",

note = "Publisher Copyright: {\textcopyright} 2023 Owner/Author.; 55th Annual ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing, STOC 2023 ; Conference date: 20-06-2023 Through 23-06-2023",

year = "2023",

month = jun,

day = "2",

doi = "10.1145/3564246.3585193",

language = "אנגלית",

series = "Proceedings of the Annual ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing",

publisher = "Association for Computing Machinery",

pages = "1311--1324",

editor = "Barna Saha and Servedio, {Rocco A.}",

booktitle = "STOC 2023 - Proceedings of the 55th Annual ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing",

}