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Academic Report: Priority Queues with Balking: Game-theoretic Analysis and Two-dimensional Equilibrium Strategies


Lecture: Priority Queues with Balking: Game-theoretic Analysis and Two-dimensional Equilibrium Strategies  

Speaker: Prof. Wang Jinting

Venue: Room 404, Teaching Building of the School of Science, West Campus

Date: Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Time: 10:00

Speaker Introduction

Wang Jinting, Professor at Beijing Jiaotong University, doctoral supervisor, is included in the project: New Talents of the Ministry of Education. In 2000, he graduated from the institute of Applied Mathematics of the School of Academy of Mathematics and Systems Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and obtained his Ph.D. in Operations Research and Cybernetics. His research interests include random operations (random service and operational management, reliability theory, supply chain optimization and management, queuing game theory, etc.) and application of probability statistics. He is currently the Chairman of the Reliability Branch of the China Operations Research Society, the Vice Chairman of the China Operations Research Society’s Stochastic Service and Operations Management Branch, the director of the China Operations Research Society, and the vice chairman of the Beijing Operations Research Institute. In 2006, he won the 10th Young Teachers Award of the Huo Yingdong Education Foundation of the Ministry of Education. In 2011, he was selected by the Ministry of Education for the New Century Excellent Talents Support Program. In 2018, he won the Zhan Tianyou Railway Science and Technology Award. He has published more than 100 academic papers, including more than 80 SCI academic papers and the citation rate is more than 500 times, SCI strict citation more than 400 times, Google Scholar cited more than 1600 times, published one monograph (Quartine Game Theory Foundation,  Science Press, alone 2016)

Lecture Content

In this talk, we consider an M/M/1 queuing system with a pay-for-priority option, and study customers' joint decisions between joining/balking and pay-for-priority. The equilibrium strategies are thus two-dimensional. First, we fully characterize the equilibrium structure and identify the Pareto-dominant strategies of such a game analytically, under both the observable and unobservable settings. Interestingly, the equilibrium structure, the system throughput, and the service provider’s optimal price for priority premium can all be non-monotone in the service reward, which departs from the existing models of priority queues without balking. In particular, we find that an increase in service reward can actually hurt the firm’s revenue (everything else being equal). Second, we compare the server’s revenue between the observable and the unobservable settings. We find that the service provider is better off with the observable setting when the system load is either low or high, but benefits more from the unobservable setting when the system load is medium. The fact that the optimal setting switches twice as the system load increases, is rather interesting; we explain the intuitions behind it in this paper. Finally, we demonstrate the implications of these findings by applying our model framework to Papa John’s Pizza, based on publicly available information. Our analysis suggests that Papa John’s could benefit from providing customers with wait information while slightly decreasing its fee for Papa Priority.

All are welcome.

[Translated by Yu Miao]

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