Combinatorial Auctions are an attractive application of
intelligent agents; their applications are countless and are shown
to provide good revenues. On the other hand, one of the issues
they raise is the computational complexity of the solving process
(the Winner Determination Problem, WDP), that delayed their
practical use. Recently, efficient solvers have been applied to
the WDP, so the framework starts to be viable.
A second issue, common to many other agent systems, is trust:
in order for an agent system to be used, the users must
trust both their representative and the other agents
inhabiting the society: malicious agents must be found, and their
violations discovered. The SOCS project addresses such issues,
and provided a language, the social integrity constraints,
for defining the allowed interaction moves, together with a proof
procedure able to detect violations.
In this paper we show how to write a protocol for the
combinatorial auctions by using social integrity constraints. In
the devised protocol, the auctioneer interacts with an external
solver for the winner determination problem.