AØKA08053U Auctions

Volume 2013/2014
MSc in Economics
The course covers what can be considered as basic auction theory, starting with a treatment of standard auctions under private value and establishing the revenue equivalence theorem. It is then discussed how the fundamental result can be extended to cover some further cases, and also basic mechanism theory is discussed briefly. After this, the course deals with auctions under dependent values, where the main focus is the discover how much of the previous established theory can be extended to this case, and to see whether there are general rankings of auction types according to revenue to seller. Following this there is a discussion of collusion, and then the multiobject auctions are discussed in some detail. Whenever relevant, real-life auctions are discussed, and some of the specific problems to which they give rise are considered in more detail.
Learning Outcome

The course aims at giving the students the abilities and competences needed to understand and to deal with main problems related to the design of auctions as well as the behavior of individuals as bidders or as sellers in an auction. Auctions are here considered in the broad sense including auctions of several objects as well as more general mechanisms for allocation of goods or rights. The competences to be acquired in the course of the teaching include the following

  1. Knowledge of basic forms of auctions as well as their formal representation, ability to characterize given auctions in terms of theoretically relevant properties
  2. Knowledge of optimal bid strategies for buyers in simple auctions types, knowledge of and ability to exploit the fundamental result about revenue equivalence in simple standard auctions
  3. Knowledge of the fundamental problems in the context of mechanism design as well as of methods for truthful revelation of preferences
  4. Understanding of the complications which arise when the objects set for sale have a more complicated nature, and of cases of ranking of auction types according to their revenue to sellers
  5. Understanding the problems connected with collusion of bidders, both for the seller and for the proper functioning of such collusion arrangements
  6. Knowledge of fundamental problems occurring in multiobject auction as well as of the extension of the simple auctions to this context.
  7. Knowledge of selected real-life auctions with their specific problems, such as internet auctions, auctions in connection with initial public offerings.
Basic textbooks is: V.Krishna, Auction theory, Academic Press, 2nd edition, Academic Press 2010.
3 hours of lectures per week for 14 weeks
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam
  • 3
  • Lectures
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 161
  • Total
  • 206
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination, 3 hours under invigilation
A 3 hours written examination taking place at Peter Bangs Vej 36.
Without aids
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
100 % censurship
Exam period
Will be updated before the start of the semester
Same as ordinary. But if only a few students have registered for the re-exam, the exam might change to an oral exams with a synopsis to be handed in. This means that the examination date also will change.
Criteria for exam assesment
The Student must in a satisfactory way demonstrate that he/she has mastered the learning outcome of the course.