Technical Keynote Lecture
Professor John Debenham, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia
Automating Negotiation: It's what you know that matters
Theories of competitive interaction date back to the early work in game theory by John von Neumann. A wealth of powerful ideas have been developed since then and the area remains very active today, including the application of this technology to on-line auctions. Despite these impressive achievements, the negotiation of even simple business contracts is generally not automated. This talk reviews some of the achievements in game theory and decision theory, and proposes that the management of the various uncertainties that pervade real-world negotiation is the key to negotiating contracts automatically.
John Debenham is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Software Engineering at the University of Technology, Sydney. His early work concentrated on the design of knowledge-based systems and was published in ''Knowledge Systems Design'' (Prentice-Hall, 1989) and ''Knowledge Engineering'' (Springer-Verlag, 1998). For the past five years his interest has focussed on multiagent systems and automated negotiation. He collaborates with Carles Sierra (IIIA, Barcelona) and visits the IIIA laboratory regularly. Together they have pioneered ''information-based agency'' that deals with the uncertainty that pervades real-world negotiations. They have a close relationship with iSOCO the Spanish consultancy who are building information-based agents. John is a member of the Congress of the Australian Computer Society, and is Secretary of IFIP TC12 'Artificial Intelligence'.