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390055 UK PhD-VGSE: Auction Theory (2011S)

Continuous assessment of course work

Please contact Maarten Janssen (maarten.janssen@univie.ac.at) to register for this course. To attend this course you should have the required background knowledge, be ambitious in progressing with your research, and participate actively in class.

This course will be taught in May.


max. 24 participants
Language: English


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Monday 02.05. 09:30 - 12:30 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)
Friday 06.05. 09:00 - 12:00 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)
Monday 09.05. 10:30 - 13:30 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)
Friday 13.05. 09:00 - 12:00 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)
Wednesday 18.05. 16:00 - 19:00 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)
Friday 20.05. 09:00 - 12:00 (Seminarraum 2, Maria-Theresien-Str.3/Mezzanin, 1090 Wien)


Aims, contents and method of the course

The course will provide an illustration of the use of game theory to address
applied economic issues. It will introduce auction theory with a minimal focus on mathematical techniques. Instead it will emphasize the relationship between an empirical issue to be modeled and the appropriate modeling techniques, such as choice of informational variables and structures, choice of environmental and valuation variables and structures, which variables are endogenous.

Highly tentative schedule (the following topics are each estimated to take 3-3 1/2 hours of class time):
1st: models to understand real-world phenomena, what auction theorists do naturally, and what research needs to be done
2nd: basic intro to auction theory, key concepts, examples of relations between assumptions and conclusions
3rd: where do prices come from? How are prices related to the information possessed by bidders, by seller
4th: relationships between auction rules, information flows, and bidders' incentives
5th: choice of endogenous variables, entry incentives
6th: multi-object auctions, rights to choose, computational manageability
7th: examples of applying auction structure to industrial economics questions

Assessment and permitted materials

Each student'ss grade will be based entirely on his/her contributions to the learning of other students in the class. These contributions can include asking or answering questions or offering useful comments in class, arranging to summarize for the class a paper of interest (a as little as 5-10 minutes) or the relationship between a couple papers. These summaries can be on the course website or in class. In addition, postings on the website of questions and answers, links to websites of interest, and/or discussion of ongoing controversies can count as contributions.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Examination topics

Reading list

The only graduate text is Vijay Krishna, Auction Theory, 2nd Edition, Academic Press, 2010; students with interest in pursuing auction theory and an adequate mathematical background will wish to obtain and read the book. For many students, the book will be difficult, and stray considerably from the focus of the course. (Not required.)
Klemperer (2000), cite below, is a somewhat more accessible introductory survey, also somewhat less incongruent with the course focus. (Not required.)
Klemperer (2003), cite below, "Why Every Economist Should Learn Some Auction Theory" is probably the best introductory article for most students.
Rothkopf and Harstad (1994a), and Harstad and Pekec (2008), cites below, are notably more accessible and quite different in spirit. They will be discussed at the beginning of the course, and each student will be presumed to have at least skimmed both papers, carefully reading the introductions, and carefully reading at least one other section of his or her choosing in each paper.

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Fr 31.08.2018 08:58