Research

Below is a short description of some research directions I'm currently pursuing, along with some of my representative papers on these topics. I no longer keep track of all publications on my website, but I have found that DBLP catches most of them.

**Algorithmic
Mechanism Design:** When real people interact with algorithms, they impose additional constraints beyond the algorithm's speed, storage, and correctness. For instance, real people have their own incentives that may misalign with the designer's goal -- for this reason, they may choose not to follow a protocol as asked of them. Real people also behave more predictably in simple and transparent interactions, so this motivates formally considering the simplicity of algorithms deployed in these settings when measuring their quality. Below is a non-exhaustive list of domains where this kind of reasoning is necessary.

**Auction Design:** Every
auction designer has an objective -- perhaps to make as much revenue as
possible. But participants in an auction have their own objectives -- to get the goods they like the most and to pay as little as possible for receiving them. It turns out to be much more difficult (both conceptually and computationally) to design auctions that properly account for these incentives than to just solve the underlying algorithmic problems. Much of my work in this area aims to understand the structure of optimal auctions, and when the simple auctions we see every day are approximately optimal. [BILW 14, CDW
16], [BMSW 18, CWWZ 23], [PSW 19, PSW 22], [BW 19], [KMSSW 19], [FW 20, EFW 22], [WZ 22].

**Combinatorial Auctions:** Consider a set of players who wish to allocate a set of items amongst themselves in a way that maximies the *welfare*. That is, each player has a valuation function over subsets of items, and they wish to jointly maximize the sum of players' values for the set she receives. More specifically, they would like to do so with as little *communication* as possible. Such problems are fairly well-understood in the absence of incentives, but what if players selfishly want to maximize their own value and may manipulate a proposed communication protocol? [BMW
18, AKSW 20], [EFNTW 19], [CTW 20], [RRTWZ 21], [BW 23].

**Blockchain Protocols:** Blockchain protocols specify desired behavior for network participants, and offer rewards. However, reward schemes in practice rarely incentivize the prescribed desired behavior. It is important to understand participants' incentives in existing systems, and also to design reward schemes that correctly incentivize intended behavior. [CKWN 16], [BNPW 19, FW 21], [AW 22], [FHWY 22], [BW 23].

**Algorithms Under Uncertainty:** Often, we must make irrevocable decisions today with limited information about how things will play out tomorrow. My own work has focused largely on *online selection problems*, where you are trying to select the best element(s) of a set. The catch is that elements are revealed to you one at a time, and you must immediately and irrevocably decide whether to accept or reject with uncertainty about whether better elements might arrive in the future. [YouTube Video 1, YouTube Video 2], [KW 12],
[AKW 14], [RWW 20], [CCFPW 22, SVW 23], [DW 23], [CGW 23], [RSW 18, GPRW 20, PRW 23].

**Economics and Computation, Broadly:** I'm also generally interested in the field of Economics and Computation broadly, including in projects that don't neatly fit into one of the above directions. [BIMW 20], [SSW 17, SWZZ 20, DW 21, DW 22, DFRSW 22], [NNW 21].