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InterNeg Newsletter
August 2005

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Let me begin by saying how great it was to meet up with so many of our European, Asian and North American partners during the GDN conference this July in Vienna (picture on the right). The e-negotiation team made quite a presence with 23 papers. Nevertheless the honour goes to Rudolf Vetschera and his team for their excellent work in organizing the conference, everything was well beyond expectation.

As you will notice in this newsletter, the last few months have been quite eventful for us and time seemed to have flown by. I invite you to take a look at the activities and collaborations that we have participated in, as well as announcements for future endeavors.

The first is that the Interneg Research Centre has been formally approved by the Faculty Council of the John Molson School of Business. It is a real achievement and we need to thank Jamshid Etezadi for his tireless efforts in pursuing this goal. As you are aware, the establishment of a centre dedicated to e-negotiation research was part of our original proposal to SSHRC. The centre will provide an infrastructure essential to our research needs. I would like to thank the members of the Faculty Council who approved this motion.

The second announcement is that a Memorandum of Understanding among the University of Augsburg, the Technical University of Munich and Concordia Univeristy promoting international joint research has been approved.Thanks to Martin Bichler for initiating this collaboration. Let our efforts continue to enlarge this circle of knowledge!

The third announcement is that Christof Weinhardt and his group will organize the next GDN meeting in the Karlsruhe Schloss in June 2006. Soon there will be more information at our Announcements page.

Lastly, we are in the process of growing not only in virtual but also in physical space; this is good news for many of us with more specifics to come.--Gregory Kersten

Student Collaborations

This year has been and is continuing to be a year of student collaboration within the e-negotiation project. New ideas and experiments are emerging as a result of fresh perspective brought from different areas. Here are some descriptions of projects:

In mid May, It was a pleasure to have Eva-Maria Psendorfer, from the University of Vienna, visit us in Montreal (picture on the left). She presented as part of the Finexin Workshop in Ottawa and is collaborating with Vivi Nastase, University of Ottawa, on a project entitled "Machine learning and pattern recognition in e-negotiations". We look forward to Eva-Maria's return in September to continue this study.

In late May, Eva Chen left Montreal to learn about e-market engineering and investigate channels for collaboration at the Institute of Information Engineering and Management, Karlsruhe University. Since her return, she has not stop praising Dirk Neumann and Christof Weinhardt for their hospitality. Wow, maybe we should all go to Karlsruhe! Eva is currently working with Ilka Weber (from Karlsruhe University) on "Factors that influence the adoption of auction systems", using the Meet2Trade auction platform and supervised by Dirk Neumann and Christof Weinhardt.

In June, Stefanie Rinderle from the University of Ulm, Germany, joined the project as a post doctoral fellow. She is collaborating with Morad Benyoucef on "Modeling e-negotiation processes within a service-oriented architecture" and will present this on August 17th, 2005 at 10:00am in Vanier 137, Univeristy of Ottawa. Her efforts in the e-negotiation project already include one publication submitted to the WISE 2005 Conference and one journal publication in preparation for submission to GDN Special issue on e-democracy, guest editor David Rios Insua. Check out Stefanie's biography!

In late August, Patrick Brugger from Technical University of Munich, a Master student under Martin Bichler will arrive for a work term at John Molson School of Business. He will be working on the design of laboratory experiments. Plans are also underway for two more students from Karlsruhe University, Tunc Berdan (who will carry on the work initiated by our good friend Lutz!) and Carsten Bloc (who intends to mine the Inspire data). We very much look forward to meeting and working with Patrick, Tunc and Carsten! -- Norma Paradis

Ottawa Workshop

On May 26th and 27th, 2005, Vivi Nastase and Stan Szpakowicz organized a workshop at the University of Ottawa with much acclaim. Here is what they have to say:

"The e-negotiation project--the SSHRC grant-- was the major sponsor. We had over two dozen participants, three invited speakers, an intriguing mix of topics in a truly interdisciplinary fashion, and a tasty conference dinner in a funky fusion restaurant. Even the weather in Ottawa was passable. Go get any of the eleven papers off the website or wait for two journal special issues with post-workshop papers." --Stan Szpakowicz and Vivi Nastase

Euro Working Group on Distributed Decision Making

Rudolf Vetschera of the University of Vienna would like to announce that as part of his activities for the Euro Working on distributed Decision Making, he will organize a stream on distributed decision making at the Euro conference next year in Iceland on July 2nd to 5th, 2006. He feels that it would be nice if we could have one or two sessions on the work involving our group as part of that stream.

Rudlof thinks that our research on e-negotiation would definitely fit very well. Anybody interested in organizing a session, please contact Rudolf (! -- Eva Chen

Happy Kims!

Post doctoraI fellow, our own JinBaek Kim has had a busy few months. He is the proud new father of baby Joelle, born April 15th, 2005. Congratulations to JinBaek and Dohee .. .job well done!!!

We would also like to wish JinBaek well on his new employment as Assistant Professor for the Concordia Institute for Information systems Engineering, Concordia University.

Although JinBaek has moved his office, he will continue to collaborate with us on the Invite project. We are so happy for this! He is very excited about the laboratory experiments with Invite planned for September.

Best of luck JB with EVERYTHING! --Norma Paradis and Eva Chen


Parting With Dear Friends!

Stefan Strecker, post-doctoral fellow, has left us to accept the position of Assistant Professor at the University of Essen, Germany.

We will miss Stefan and Nicola dearly. Stefan has been the driving force in setting up experiments involving Invite, and he has brought many initiatives to our group.

We envy your new employer for gaining such a bright star and we hope for future collaborations! --Eva Chen and Norma Paradis

SmartSettle Research to Target Insurance Cases

The SmartSettle e-negotiation system is starting to be used commercially in various areas. Preparations are also being made to apply the system to real-life insurance settlement cases after being tested with data from simulated cases in the e-negotiation tournament. SmartSettle has been invited to explain and demonstrate how it works with Bachelor of Justice Studies learners investigating Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) at RoyalRoads University. The purpose of the presentation will be to illustrate the potential application of online ADR using an insurance case. We hope to test SmartSettle in field trials as an early intervention strategy in insurance settlement case. There is a potential for collaboration with RoyalRoads University in our SSHRC research project.--Ernie Thiessen

Concordia University (Montreal) and Carleton University (Ottawa)
Copyright 1996-2005 Gregory Kersten & The InterNeg Group