Graduation Year

2004

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.C.S.

Degree Granting Department

Computer Science

Major Professor

Ranganathan, Nagarajan.

Keywords

game theory, normal form game, N player game, Nash equilibrium, crisis management

Abstract

The problem of resource allocation and management in the context of multiple crises occurring in an urban environment is challenging. In this thesis, the problem is formulated using game theory and a solution is developed based on the Nash equilibrium to optimize the allocation of resources to the different crisis events in a fair manner considering several constraints such as the availability of resources, the criticality of the events, the amount of resources requested etc. The proposed approach is targeted at managing small to medium level crisis events occurring simultaneously within a specific pre-defined perimeter with the resource allocation centers being located within the same fixed region. The objective is to maximize the utilization of the emergency response units while minimizing the response times. In the proposed model, players represent the crisis events and the strategies correspond to possible allocations.

The choice of strategies by each player impacts the decisions of the other players. The Nash equilibrium condition will correspond to the set of strategies chosen by all the players such that the resource allocation optimal for a given player also corresponds to the optimal allocations of the other players. The implementation of the Nash equilibrium condition is based on the Hansen's combinatorial theorem based approximation algorithm. The proposed solution has been implemented using C++ and experimental results are presented for various test cases. Further, metrics are developed for establishing the quality and fairness of the obtained results.

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