Collaborative Agents -- REsearch and Development (CARE) 2010

held in conjunction with the International Conference on Intelligent Agent Technology (IAT).

Workshop Day on 31st August 2010 (York University, Toronto, Canada) 


CARE organisers

Christian Guttmann, Email:

Frank Dignum, Email:



Location: TEL 0005

8.35    8.45


8.45    9.10

Multi-Agent Coalition Formation for Distributed Area Coverage: Analysis and Evaluation

Ke Cheng and Prithviraj Dasgupta

9.10    9.35

Collaboration in Network-Centric Warfare - Modeling Joint Fire Support Teams

Christian Gerstner, Robert Siegfried, and Nane Kratzke

09.35 – 10.00

Isogonic Formation with Connectivity Preservation for a Team of Holo. Robots in a Cluttered Environment

Soheil Keshmiri and Shahram Payandeh

10.00 –  10.20

Tea Break

10.20    10.45

E-Learning Computational Cloud (eLC2): Web Services Platform to Enhance Task Collaboration

Sidhant Rajam, Ruth Cortez, Alexander Vazhenin, and Subhash Bhalla

10.45 – 11.10

Modeling Warehouse Logistics using Agent Organizations

Marcel Hiel, Huib Aldewereld, and Frank Digum

11.10– 11.35

Enhancing Patient-Centered Palliative Care With Collaborative Agents

Ji Ruan, Wendy MacCaull, and Heather Jewers

11.35– 12.00

Intelligent Adherence Support to Manage Contractual Relationships

Christian Guttmann, Kumari Wickramasinghe, Ian Edward Thomas, Michael Georgeff, and Heinz Schmidt

12.00 –  13.35

Lunch Break

13.35 – 15.00

Workshop Keynote Address

Professor Milind Tambe, University of Southern California*

Discussion, Panel and Future of CARE –  Closing




Online Discussion Groups

Please join the CARE and AAMAS Linkedin groups for updates and discussions about CARE and Agents.

Invited Speaker: Professor Milind Tambe, University of Southern California*

Title: Two Decades of Multiagent Teamwork Research: Past, Present, Future

(Session C 13:25 – 15:00, Location TEL 0005)

Abstract: Belief-desire-intention (BDI) theories of Multiagent Teamwork guided the first breakthrough in multiagent collaboration, leading to domain independent models of multiagent teamwork that were resuable across domains and more robust to failures. While these models provided early successes in terms of large-scale applications, their perceived weaknesses in: (i) handling costs and uncertainties of real-world domains, and (ii) scaling up to problems requiring large networks of less powerful computing nodes, have led to two new models that have dominated multiagent teamwork research this past decade: Distributed Partially Observable Markov Decision Problems (DEC-POMDPs) and Distributed Constraint Optimization (DCOPS).  After a quick review of past research and outlining a framework to view recent advances in DCOP and DEC-POMDP, I will discuss our recent research results in DCOPs and DEC-POMDPs.  I will focus in particular on our recent work on scalable but incomplete (locally optimal) DCOP algorithms, as well as DCOP algorithms when rewards are unknown. For example, given unknown rewards, increased team coordination in DCOP algorithms can hurt team performance, even when communication and computation costs are ignored, which we term the team uncertainty penalty.  I will end my presentation with a look at the future of this area of research: After a decade of encouraging progress with these new models, it is time to step back and ask if there is something we could still learn from BDI teamwork models, and how that might help us in pushing forward successes in terms of large-scale applications.

Biography: Milind Tambe is a Professor of Computer Science and Industrial and Systems Engineering at the University of Southern California (USC). He received his Ph.D. from the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. He leads the TEAMCORE Research Group at USC, with a research focus on agent-based and multi-agent systems. He is a fellow of AAAI (Association for Advancement of Artificial Intelligence) and recipient of the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) SIGART Agents Research award. He is also the recipient of a special commendation given by the Los Angeles World Airports police from the city of Los Angeles, USC Viterbi School of Engineering use-inspired research award, Okawa foundation faculty research award, the RoboCup scientific challenge award, and the ACM recognition of service award. Prof. Tambe and his research group's papers have been selected as best papers or finalists for best papers at a dozen premier Artificial Intelligence and Operations Research Conferences and workshops, and their algorithms have been deployed for real-world use by several agencies including the LAX police, the Federal Air Marshals service and the Transportation security administration.

* This is joint research with members of Tambe’s Teamcore research group, including Jun Kwak, Matt Taylor, Manish Jain, Chris Kiekintveld, Zhengyu Yin, Rong Yang and others.



Workshop Summary

Collaboration is required when multiple agents achieve complex goals that are difficult or impossible to attain for an individual agent. This collaboration takes place under conditions of incomplete information, uncertainty, and bounded rationality, much of which has been previously studied in economics and artificial intelligence. However, many real world domains are characterised by even greater complexity, including the possibility of unreliable and non-complying collaborators, complex market and incentive frameworks, and complex transaction costs and organisational structures. This workshop's thematic focus is on collaborative and autonomous agents that plan, negotiate, coordinate, and act under this complexity.


This workshop aims to foster discussions on computational models of collaboration in distributed systems, addressing a range of theoretical and practical issues. We seek contributions of members in research and industry that use the agent paradigm to approach their problems.


Some issues of interest of this workshop are:

  • How to enable agents to form and follow joint agreements and contracts in complex organisational and market driven domains.
  • How to develop a comprehensive contractual formation/maintenance framework applicable to many application domains.
  • How to build comprehensive customer lifecycle management systems for customers, including telecommunication consumers, students and patients.
  • How to deploy lifecycle management systems in real world applications, such as healthcare, telecommunication, and smart campuses.
  • How to design markets that are adequate for agents to act with incomplete and uncertain information of the behaviour of collaborating agents.
  • How to build MAS that work efficiently in partially regulated markets (where governance policy or partnership agreements govern part of the market).
  • What are the implications of partial regulation on the management of contractual relationships and service delivery.
  • How organisational structures influence the negotiation of agents and the distribution/execution of tasks.
  • How to cope with collaborators that exhibit unreliable and non-conformant behaviour, eg where agreements are made but are not always conformed with.
  • How can interventions and incentive structures assist in managing contractual relationships and service delivery.
  • How to assign transaction costs to actions in planning, assignment, and execution in organisational structures.
  • How can transaction costs influence the social outcome of the system which is further influenced by the organisational context under which the collaboration takes place.
  • Can lessons learnt in game theoretic computation inform collaborative agent settings.
  • What role does learning and adaptivity play in building organisational MAS.


The one day workshop will feature a mixture of invited talks, discussions and submitted contributions describing current work or work in progress in collaborative agent research and technology. The workshop environment fosters open discussions among all participants, particularly encouraging students to discuss their research topics and seek feedback from senior agent researchers.


Accommodation Info in Toronto.


Important Dates

FINAL EXTENDED Full Paper DEADLINE: April 26, 2010

Abstract submission: April 14, 2010
Full paper submission: April 16, 2010

Notification: June 7, 2010
Camera ready: June 21, 2010


Workshop Poster in PDF format

Call for Papers (CFP) in TXT format

Topics of Interest include (but are not limited to):



  • Collaboration frameworks
  • Models of teamwork and joint action
  • Organisation/Institutes/Norms
  • Auctioning/Negotiation
  • Task/Resource allocation
  • Behaviour modelling/monitoring
  • Adherence/Intervention mechanisms
  • Incentive frameworks
  • Intervention mechanisms
  • Agreement technology
  • Contract networks/formation
  • Cloud computing


  • Collaborative care planning/management
  • Disaster planning/management
  • Traffic planning/management
  • Transport/Logistics
  • Applications in primary and preventative healthcare
  • Chronic disease planning/management
  • Epidemiological agent models
  • Unmanned air/land vehicles
  • Robotic soccer/Robotic rescues
  • Weather forecast
  • Artificial and natural immune systems
  • Social networks (e.g., LinkedIn, Facebook,...)
  • Smart grid network (e.g., electricity/gas metering)


Submission and Publication

Submission is to be done electronically at Cyberchair at:

CARE 2010 seeks 4-page submissions formatted according to IEEE specification.


Style Files for Paper Submission

IEEE Computer Society Proceedings Manuscript Formatting Guidelines:




LaTex Formatting Macros:


Submissions will be peer-reviewed by two or three reviewers per paper. Selection criteria will include relevance, significance, impact, originality, technical soundness, quality of presentation. Some preference may also be given to papers which address emergent trends or important common themes, or which enhance balance of workshop topics.

Workshop Officials

Christian Guttmann (Etisalat British Telecom Innovation Centre EBTIC, United Arab Emirates and Monash University, Australia)

Frank Dignum (University Utrecht, Netherlands)


Wei Chen (Intelligent Automation, Inc., United States of America)

Philippe Pasquier (Simon Fraser University, Canada)

Michael Luck (King's College London, United Kingdom)

Lawrence Cavedon (NICTA and RMIT University, Australia)

Samin Karim (Accenture, Australia)

Cees Witteveen (Delft University of Technology, Netherlands)                                                        

Franziska Klügl (Örebro University, Sweden)

Toby Walsh (NICTA and UNSW, Australia)

Cristiano Castelfranchi (Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies, Italy)

Alexander Pokahr (University Hamburg, Germany)

Lars Brauchbach (University Hamburg, Germany)

Wayne Wobcke (University of New South Wales, Australia)

Rainer Unland (University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany)

Liz Sonenberg (Melbourne University, Australia)
Kumari Wickramasinghe
(Monash University, Australia)

Simon Thompson
(British Telecom Research Laboratories, United Kingdom)
Gord McCalla
(University of Saskatchewan, Canada)
Andrew Gilpin
(Hg Analytics, United States of America)
David Morley
(SRI International, United States of America)

Marcelo Blois Ribeiro (Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil)

Simon Goss (Defence Science and Technology Organisation DSTO, Australia)


Previous CARE workshops:

CARE09@AI09, Melbourne, Australia