We are honoured to announce that Dr. Salil Kanhere (University of New South Wales) will deliver the keynote at CASPer 2016.  The details are as follows:

Title: Carrots and Sticks – Incentives that Make Mobile Crowdsensing Work
Speaker: Dr. Salil Kanhere (University of New South Wales)

Abstract: Crowdsourcing offers a cost-effective approach to distributed problem solving and data collection by soliciting contributions (solutions, ideas, data, etc.) from a large group of people. Recently, due to the burgeoning smartphone industry and the surging demand for sensing data, a new mobile computing and sensing paradigm called mobile crowdsensing has emerged and has created significant momentum in both industry and academia. Pivotal to the viability of all such crowdsourcing systems, is whether there is enough incentive to attract sufficient participation.

Many crowdsourcing scenarios are heterogeneous in the sense that, not only the workers types (e.g., abilities and costs) are different, but the beliefs (probabilistic knowledge) about their respective types are also different. In this talk, we design an incentive mechanism for such scenarios using an asymmetric all-pay contest (or auction) model. Our design objective is an optimal mechanism, i.e., one that maximizes the crowdsourcing revenue minus cost. To achieve this, we furnish the contest with a prize tuple which is an array of reward functions for each potential winner (worker). We prove and characterize the unique equilibrium of this contest, and solve the optimal prize tuple. In addition, this study discovers a counter-intuitive property, strategy autonomy (SA), which means that heterogeneous workers behave independently of one another as if they were in a homogeneous setting.

In the second part of the talk, we propose the use of Tullock contests as an alternative framework to design incentive mechanisms for crowdsourcing. We explore a new dimension of optimal Tullock contents design by provisioning the prize as a function. We are inspired by the conduciveness of Tullock contests to attracting user entry in other domains. In this talk, we explore a new dimension in optimal Tullock contest design, by superseding the contest prize–which is fixed in conventional Tullock contests–with a prize function that is dependent on the (unknown) winners contribution, in order to maximize the crowdsourcers utility. We show that this approach leads to several attractive practical advantages.

Bio: Dr. Salil Kanhere received his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees, both in Electrical Engineering from Drexel University, Philadelphia in 2001 and 2003, respectively. He is currently an Associate Professor in the School of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. His current research interests include pervasive computing, crowdsourcing, embedded sensor networks, mobile networking, privacy and security. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed articles and delivered over 15 tutorials and keynote talks on these research topics. He is a contributing research staff at National ICT Australia and a faculty associate at Institute for Infocomm Research, Singapore. Salil regularly serves on the organising committee of a number of IEEE and ACM international conferences (e.g, IEEE PerCom, ACM MobiSys, ACM SenSys, ACM CoNext, IEEE WoWMoM, IEEE LCN, ACM MSWiM, IEEE DCOSS, IEEE SenseApp, ICDCN, ISSNIP). He currently serves as the Area Editor for Pervasive and Mobile Computing, Computer Communications, International Journal of Ad Hoc and Ubiquitous Computing and Mobile Information Systems. Salil is a Senior Member of both the IEEE and the ACM. He is a recipient of the Humboldt Research Fellowship in 2014.