# Kalai-Smorodinsky Solution to Bargaining Problems

1. Desired Properties

• invariant to coordinate-wise affine transformation
• symmetry-preserving
• efficient
• monotone

2. Problem Statement

We consider a two-person bargaining problem formulated as follows

• : to every two-person game we associated a pair , where is a point in the plane and is a subset of the plane.
• The pair has the following intuitive interpretation: where is the level of utility that player receives if the two players do not cooperate with each other.
• Every point represents the level of utility for players 1 and 2 that can be reached by an outcome of the game which is feasible for the two players when they do cooperate

3. Assumption

• Assumption 1: There is at least one point such that . In other words, bargaining may prove worthwhile for both players.
• Assumption 2: is convex. This is justified under the assumption if two outcomes of the game give raise to points and in , then randomization of these two outcomes give raise to all convex combinations of and
• Assumption 3: is compact
• Assumption 4: for every . If this is not the case, we can disregard all the points of that fail to satisfy this condition because it is impossible that both players will agree to such a solution.

4. Axioms
We let denote the set of pairs that satisfying these four conditions, and we call an element in a bargaining pair.

• Axiom 1: Pareto Optimality
• For every there is no such that and
• Axiom 2: Symmetry
• We let be defined by and we require that for every , .
• Axiom 3: Invariance with Respect to Affine Transformation of Utility
• A is an afine transformation of utility if , , and the maps are of the form for some positive constant and some constant . We require that for such a transformation , .
In addition to the above three axioms, Nash introduced the following
• Axiom of Independence of Irrelavant Alternatives
• If and are bargaining pairs such that and , then
• Interpretation: given a bargaining pair , for every point , consider the product . Then is the unique point in that maximizes this product.
• Many objectives are raised to Nash’s axiom of independence of irrelevant alternatives.
We define some notations,
• Let be a function defined for in the following way
• if is the Pareto of
• if there is no such .
• thus is the maximum player 2 can get if player 1 get at least x.
• By assumption 1 in the definition of a bargaining pair
• By the compactness of , and are finite and are attained by points in
• A pair will be called normalized if and . Clearly every game can be normalized by a unique affine transformation of the utilities.

Example objective to Nash’s Solution: consider the following two normalized pair and where

• = convex hull, and
• = convex hull,
• Nash’s solution for is , and for
• Limitations pf Nash’s solution: Player 2 has good reasons to demand that he get more in the bargaining pair than he does in
In order to overcome this limitation, Kalai suggests the following alternative axiom.

Axiom of Monotonicity: If and are bargaining pairs such that and , then (where

• This axiom states that if, for every utility level that player 1 may demand, the maximum feasible utility level that player 2 can simultaneously reach is increased, then the utility level assigned to player 2 according to the solution should also be increased
Theorem: There is one and only one solution, , satisfying the axioms of monotonicity. The function has the following simple representation. For a pair consider the line joining a to be , . The maximal element (with partial order of ) of on this line is

5. How does it work
• to normalize the utility function of each agent in such a way that it is worth zero at the status quo and one at this agent’s best outcome — given that all others get at least their status quo utility level
• to sharing equally the benefits of cooperation. In other words, this solution equalizes the relative benefit from status quo or equivalently the relative frustration until the shadow optimum.

6. Solution

• Independence of irrelevant alternatives can be substituted with a monotonicity condition. It is the point which maintains the ratios of maximal gains. In other words, if player 1 could receive a maximum of with player 2’s help (and vice versa for ), then the bargaining solution would yield the point on the Pareto frontier such that .

References

[2] Other solutions to Nash’s bargaining problem, by Ehud Kalai, Meir Smorodinsky, in STOR 1975

# Summary of Nash Bargaining

1. Bargaining problems Scenarios
Bargaining problems represent situations in which

• There is a conflict of interest about agreements.
• Individual have the possibility of concluding a mutually beneficial agreements.
• No agreement may be imposed on any individual without his approval

2. Bargaining problem Definition
Example: Suppose 2 players must split one unit of good. If no agreement is reached, then players do not receive anything. We define the following notations.

• : the set of possible agreements
• X = {, )| , }
• : the disagreement outcome
• D = (0,0)
• : each player i has preferences, represented by a utility function over
Definition: a bargaining problem is then defined as a pair of where and . We assume that
• is a convex and compact set
• There exists some such that (i.e., for some i)

3. Axioms

• Pareto Efficiency
• A bargaining solution is Pareto efficient if there does not exist a such that and for some
• An inefficient outcome is unlikely, since it leaves space for renegotiation.
• Symmetry
• Let be such that if and only if and . Then .
• If the players are indistinguishable, the agreement should not discriminate between them.
• Invariance to Equivalent Payoff Representations
• Given a bargaining problem , consider a different bargaining problem , for some .
• Then
• Utility functions are only representation of preferences over outcomes. A transformation of the utility function that maintaining the same ordering over preferences (such as linear transformation) should not alter the outcome of bargaining process.
• Independence of Irrelevant Alternatives
• Let and be two bargaining problems such that , if , then .

4. Nash Bargaining Solution
Definition: We say  that a pair of payoffs is a Nash bargaining solution if it solves the following optimization problem

• subject to
We use to denote the Nash Bargaining Solution

Remarks
• Existence of an optimal solution: since the set is compact and the objective function of the problem is continuous, there exists an optimal solution for the problem
• Uniqueness of the optimal solution: the objective function of the problem is strictly quasi-concave. Therefore, the problem has a unique solution.

Proposition: Nash bargaining solution is the unique bargaining solution that satisfies the 4 axioms.

Reference
[1] Game Theory with Engineering Applications: Nash Bargaining Solution, by Asu Ozdaglar, MIT 2010