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Determining possible and necessary winners under common voting rules given partial orders.
 In Proceedings of the National Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI),
, 2008
"... Abstract Usually a voting rule requires agents to give their preferences as linear orders. However, in some cases it is impractical for an agent to give a linear order over all the alternatives. It has been suggested to let agents submit partial orders instead. Then, given a voting rule, a profile ..."
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Abstract Usually a voting rule requires agents to give their preferences as linear orders. However, in some cases it is impractical for an agent to give a linear order over all the alternatives. It has been suggested to let agents submit partial orders instead. Then, given a voting rule, a profile of partial orders, and an alternative (candidate) c, two important questions arise: first, is it still possible for c to win, and second, is c guaranteed to win? These are the possible winner and necessary winner problems, respectively. Each of these two problems is further divided into two subproblems: determining whether c is a unique winner (that is, c is the only winner), or determining whether c is a cowinner (that is, c is in the set of winners). We consider the setting where the number of alternatives is unbounded and the votes are unweighted. We completely characterize the complexity of possible/necessary winner problems for the following common voting rules: a class of positional scoring rules (including Borda), Copeland, maximin, Bucklin, ranked pairs, voting trees, and plurality with runoff.
Llull and Copeland voting computationally resist bribery and control
, 2009
"... Control and bribery are settings in which an external agent seeks to influence the outcome of an election. Constructive control of elections refers to attempts by an agent to, via such actions as addition/deletion/partition of candidates or voters, ensure that a given candidate wins. Destructive con ..."
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Cited by 63 (30 self)
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Control and bribery are settings in which an external agent seeks to influence the outcome of an election. Constructive control of elections refers to attempts by an agent to, via such actions as addition/deletion/partition of candidates or voters, ensure that a given candidate wins. Destructive control refers to attempts by an agent to, via the same actions, preclude a given candidate’s victory. An election system in which an agent can sometimes affect the result and it can be determined in polynomial time on which inputs the agent can succeed is said to be vulnerable to the given type of control. An election system in which an agent can sometimes affect the result, yet in which it is NPhard to recognize the inputs on which the agent can succeed, is said to be resistant to the given type of control. Aside from election systems with an NPhard winner problem, the only systems previously known to be resistant to all the standard control types were highly artificial election systems created by hybridization. This paper studies a parameterized version of Copeland voting, denoted by Copeland α, where the parameter α is a rational number between 0 and 1 that specifies how ties are valued in the pairwise comparisons of candidates. In every previously studied constructive or destructive
AI’s war on manipulation: Are we winning?
 AI MAGAZINE
"... We provide an overview of more than two decades of work, mostly in AI, that studies computational complexity as a barrier against manipulation in elections. ..."
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Cited by 57 (9 self)
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We provide an overview of more than two decades of work, mostly in AI, that studies computational complexity as a barrier against manipulation in elections.
Bypassing Combinatorial Protections: PolynomialTime Algorithms for Singlepeaked Electorates
, 2010
"... For many election systems, bribery (and related) attacks have been shown NPhard using constructions on combinatorially rich structures such as partitions and covers. It is important to learn how robust these hardness protection results are, in order to find whether they can be relied on in practice ..."
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Cited by 35 (5 self)
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For many election systems, bribery (and related) attacks have been shown NPhard using constructions on combinatorially rich structures such as partitions and covers. It is important to learn how robust these hardness protection results are, in order to find whether they can be relied on in practice. This paper shows that for voters who follow the most central politicalscience model of electorates—singlepeaked preferences—those protections vanish. By using singlepeaked preferences to simplify combinatorial covering challenges, we show that NPhard bribery problems—including those for Kemeny and Llull elections—fall to polynomial time. By using singlepeaked preferences to simplify combinatorial partition challenges, we show that NPhard partitionofvoters problems fall to polynomial time. We furthermore show that for singlepeaked electorates, the winner problems for Dodgson and Kemeny elections, though Θ p 2complete in the general case, fall to polynomial time. And we completely classify the complexity of weighted coalition manipulation for scoring protocols in singlepeaked electorates.
Multimode Control Attacks on Elections
"... In 1992, Bartholdi, Tovey, and Trick [1992] opened the study of control attacks on elections—attempts to improve the election outcome by such actions as adding/deleting candidates or voters. That work has led to many results on how algorithms can be used to find attacks on elections and how complexi ..."
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Cited by 33 (12 self)
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In 1992, Bartholdi, Tovey, and Trick [1992] opened the study of control attacks on elections—attempts to improve the election outcome by such actions as adding/deleting candidates or voters. That work has led to many results on how algorithms can be used to find attacks on elections and how complexitytheoretic hardness results can be used as shields against attacks. However, all the work in this line has assumed that the attacker employs just a single type of attack. In this paper, we model and study the case in which the attacker launches a multipronged (i.e., multimode) attack. We do so to more realistically capture the richness of reallife settings. For example, an attacker might simultaneously try to suppress some voters, attract new voters into the election, and introduce a spoiler candidate. Our model provides a unified framework for such varied attacks, and by constructing polynomialtime multiprong attack algorithms we prove that for various election systems even such concerted, flexible attacks can be perfectly planned in deterministic polynomial time. 1
A Multivariate Complexity Analysis of Determining Possible Winners Given Incomplete Votes
"... The POSSIBLE WINNER problem asks whether some distinguished candidate may become the winner of an election when the given incomplete votes are extended into complete ones in a favorable way. POSSIBLE WINNER is NPcomplete for common voting rules such as Borda, many other positional scoring rules, Bu ..."
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Cited by 32 (8 self)
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The POSSIBLE WINNER problem asks whether some distinguished candidate may become the winner of an election when the given incomplete votes are extended into complete ones in a favorable way. POSSIBLE WINNER is NPcomplete for common voting rules such as Borda, many other positional scoring rules, Bucklin, Copeland etc. We investigate how three different parameterizations influence the computational complexity of POSSIBLE WINNER for a number of voting rules. We show fixedparameter tractability results with respect to the parameter “number of candidates ” but intractability results with respect to the parameter “number of votes”. Finally, we derive fixedparameter tractability results with respect to the parameter “total number of undetermined candidate pairs ” and identify an interesting polynomialtime solvable special case for Borda. 1
A Scheduling Approach to Coalitional Manipulation
"... The coalitional manipulation problem is one of the central problems in computational social choice. In this paper we focus on solving the problem under the important family of positional scoring rules, in an approximate sense that was advocated by Zuckerman et al. [SODA 2008]. Our main result is a p ..."
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Cited by 31 (12 self)
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The coalitional manipulation problem is one of the central problems in computational social choice. In this paper we focus on solving the problem under the important family of positional scoring rules, in an approximate sense that was advocated by Zuckerman et al. [SODA 2008]. Our main result is a polynomialtime algorithm with (roughly speaking) the following theoretical guarantee: given a manipulable instance with m alternatives the algorithm finds a successful manipulation with at most m − 2 additional manipulators. Our technique is based on a reduction to the scheduling problem known as QpmtnCmax, along with a novel rounding procedure. We demonstrate that our analysis is tight by establishing a new type of integrality gap. We also resolve a known open question in computational social choice by showing that the coalitional manipulation problem remains (strongly) NPcomplete for positional scoring rules even when votes are unweighted. Finally, we discuss the implications of our results with respect to the question: “Is there a prominent voting rule that is usually hard to manipulate?”
Can Approximation Circumvent GibbardSatterthwaite?
"... The GibbardSatterthwaite Theorem asserts that any reasonable voting rule cannot be strategyproof. A large body of research in AI deals with circumventing this theorem via computational considerations; the goal is to design voting rules that are computationally hard, in the worstcase, to manipulate ..."
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Cited by 24 (6 self)
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The GibbardSatterthwaite Theorem asserts that any reasonable voting rule cannot be strategyproof. A large body of research in AI deals with circumventing this theorem via computational considerations; the goal is to design voting rules that are computationally hard, in the worstcase, to manipulate. However, recent work indicates that the prominent voting rules are usually easy to manipulate. In this paper, we suggest a new CSoriented approach to circumventing GibbardSatterthwaite, using randomization and approximation. Specifically, we wish to design strategyproof randomized voting rules that are close, in a standard approximation sense, to prominent scorebased (deterministic) voting rules. We give tight lower and upper bounds on the approximation ratio achievable via strategyproof randomized rules with respect to positional scoring rules, Copeland, and Maximin.
Finite local consistency characterizes generalized scoring rules
 IJCAI
, 2009
"... An important problem in computational social choice concerns whether it is possible to prevent manipulation of voting rules by making it computationally intractable. To answer this, a key question is how frequently voting rules are manipulable. We [Xia and Conitzer, 2008] recently defined the class ..."
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Cited by 21 (11 self)
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An important problem in computational social choice concerns whether it is possible to prevent manipulation of voting rules by making it computationally intractable. To answer this, a key question is how frequently voting rules are manipulable. We [Xia and Conitzer, 2008] recently defined the class of generalized scoring rules (GSRs) and characterized the frequency of manipulability for such rules. We showed, by examples, that most common rules seem to fall into this class. However, no natural axiomatic characterization of the class was given, leaving the possibility that there are natural rules to which these results do not apply. In this paper, we characterize the class of GSRs based on two natural properties: it is equal to the class of rules that are anonymous and finitely locally consistent. Generalized scoring rules also have other uses in computational social choice. For these uses, the order of the GSR (the dimension of its score vector) is important. Our characterization result implies that the order of a GSR is related to the minimum number of locally consistent components of the rule. We proceed to bound the minimum number of locally consistent components for some common rules. 1