Group Briefing

Genesis and objective

The CompEcon (abbreviation for Computational Economics) group was formed after a reading group with the same name had been started in the summer of 2018. The reading group consists of faculty members from CSE and Econ, and students (undergraduate and graduate) from various departments. From the beginning, the idea was to foster discussion among multiple disciplines that uses ideas of game theory and mechanism design either directly or indirectly. The reading group meets during the semesters tentatively once in every fortnight. We have a speaker who presents either an original piece of his/her research, or a paper that is of the group's interest. The goal is to understand new ideas/theorems/experiments from these papers and share that with the group members. Apart from these, the enthusiastic group members (photos and mention below) travel to present their papers, create AI tools based on the research, attend workshops for idea exchange, travel for internships, and finally, celebrate over food. Please see the 'News' section below for recent updates. If you want to join our mailing list, please request for membership with your brief introduction.

Research approach

The group actions can be divided into four stages

  1. Training and preparation: since this group works in the problems of social choice and mechanism design, the first phase is to train the workforce for this area of research. This is done through a basic game theory and mechanism design course, CS711, followed by an advanced course on topics in mechanism design, CS712. If needed, some other relevant courses are also recommended.
  2. Idea development: through the readings and presentations of the CompEcon reading group, the people find new, creative ideas of research. This part is critical for the later stages.
  3. Action: in this stage, the ideas are transformed into new results. We spend some time in formal writing to improve the writing skills. This results are then disseminated among peer reviewers.
  4. System building: last but not the least, we also spend time in translating the theoretical ideas into usable tools for people to use in their daily lives. One developing tool is the peer-grading tool (more details will come soon).

Group photo(s)

Group
Group members -- July 2019.

People

Faculty

  • Swaprava Nath, Assistant Professor, CSE, IIT Kanpur.
  • Bikramaditya Datta, Assistant Professor, Econ, IIT Kanpur.

  • Current student(s)

  • Garima Shakya, PhD student, CSE, 2018 -
  • Shubham Kumar Nigam, PhD student, CSE, 2019 -
  • Jatin Jindal, BTech student, CSE, 2016 -
  • Jay Gupta, BS student, ECO, 2017 -
  • Somu Prajapati, BTech student, CSE, 2018 -
  • Ayushi Gupta, BTech student, CHE, 2018 -

  • Alumni

  • Piyush Bagad, Graduated April 2019. [First position: Wadhwani AI]
  • Sachin K. Salim, Graduated April 2018. [First position: Adobe India]

  • Visitors

  • Pranjali Agarwal, summer intern, 2018 (LNMIT, Jaipur).
  • Mohak Kulashretha, summer intern, 2018 (Shiv Nadar University).
  • Rohini Das, summer intern, 2018 (Jadavpur University).
  • Shikhar Rastogi, summer intern, 2018 (BITS Pilani, Goa).
  • Gargi Singh, summer intern, 2018 (IITK).


  • Group News

    [July 2019] A member of the group, Jatin, completes an internship in LAMSADE, University of Paris, Dauphine, where he worked with Prof. Jerome Lang and his group. He is a recipient of the prestigious Charpak Lab fellowship. His internship work investigates questions of matching students to projects with budget constraints and questions of providing fairness in truthful resource allocation.

    [May 2019] A couple of papers come out for Garima, who works on problems in computational mechanism design. The first one talks about how to test if a voting profile comes from a preferential voting environment, while the second talks about what the methods and difficulties are of protecting election results from an adversary. They appeared / going to appear in AAMAS and IJCAI.

    [May 2019] A recent research from this group examines the reason for surprise in elections. This research has been covered both by the English and Hindi press. In English, it appeared with the title: "Social Networks: Spoilers to the ‘surprise’ element in election results?" As the title suggests, it connects how social networks influence our opinion forming, and how a slight misjudgement about our neighbors in the social network may lead to a 'surprise'.