Communication Networks: Pricing, Congestion Control, Routing, and Scheduling

  • Srinivas ShakkottaiEmail author
  • R. Srikant
Reference work entry


This chapter considers three fundamental problems in the general area of communication networks and their relationship to game theory. These problems are (i) allocation of shared bandwidth resources, (ii) routing across shared links, and (iii) scheduling across shared spectrum. Each problem inherently involves agents that experience negative externalities under which the presence of one degrades the utility perceived by others. Two approaches to solving such problems are (i) to find a globally optimal allocation and simply implement it in a fait accompli fashion, and (ii) request information from the competing agents (traffic flows) and construct a mechanism to allocate resources. Often, only the second option is viable, since a centralized solution using complete information might be impractical (or impossible) with many millions of competing flows, each one having private information about the application that it corresponds to. Hence, a game theoretical analysis of these problems is natural. In what follows, we will present results on each problem and characterize the efficiency loss that results from the mechanism employed.


Communication networks Utility maximization Congestion control Traffic routing Packet scheduling 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringTexas A&M UniversityCollege StationUSA
  2. 2.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

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