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Stackelberg Contention Games in Multiuser Networks


Interactions among selfish users sharing a common transmission channel can be modeled as a noncooperative game using the game theory framework. When selfish users choose their transmission probabilities independently without any coordination mechanism, Nash equilibria usually result in a network collapse. We propose a methodology that transforms the noncooperative game into a Stackelberg game. Stackelberg equilibria of the Stackelberg game can overcome the deficiency of the Nash equilibria of the original game. A particular type of Stackelberg intervention is constructed to show that any positive payoff profile feasible with independent transmission probabilities can be achieved as a Stackelberg equilibrium payoff profile. We discuss criteria to select an operating point of the network and informational requirements for the Stackelberg game. We relax the requirements and examine the effects of relaxation on performance.

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Correspondence to Jaeok Park.

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Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Park, J., van der Schaar, M. Stackelberg Contention Games in Multiuser Networks. EURASIP J. Adv. Signal Process. 2009, 305978 (2009).

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