Supporting dynamic supply networks with agent-based coalitions
This work extends our previous work to offer richer support for collaboration across supply networks. The role of agents are divided into three sectors at any point in time: buyers, sellers and LPs. Agents take two steps to form coalitions: i) agents in each sector sequencially form primary coalitions in order to increase bargaining power, selling capacity or service efficiency, and ii) agents form secondary coalitions across sectors in order to finalize the deal and deliver goods to buyers. We propose a negotiation protocol and deliberation mechanism. The negotiation protocol allows thorough communication among agents within and across sectors. The deliberation mechanism allows agents to consider potential coalition members and attractive payoffs for them. We provide examples of how they can help agents form coalitions successfully.