Coordination with Collective and Individual Decisions

Taísa A. L. dos SantosRenata M. de AraujoAndrea M. Magdaleno;

Paulo TrigoAnders JonssonHelder Coelho

Software development is a collaborative activity that involves the effective coordination of professionals groups with variations in their skills and responsibilities. Considering the current scenarios of software development - internal development or outsourcing - the distribution of responsibilities and coordination become important aspects for this collaboration. This paper argues that understanding the way collaboration is performed, participants and managers can better understand the development process in order to conduct their activities. This paper proposes an approach based on social networks analysis to identify collaboration patterns in software development process instances which can be used as a resource for collaboration awareness and understanding. The response to a large-scale disaster, e.g. an earthquake or a terrorist incident, urges for low-cost policies that coordinate sequential decisions of multiple agents. Decisions range from collective (common good) to individual (self-interested) perspectives, intuitively shaping a two-layer decision model. However, current decision theoretic models are either purely collective or purely individual and seek optimal policies. We present a two-layer, collective versus individual (CvI) decision model and explore the tradeoff between cost reduction and loss of optimality while learning coordination skills. Experiments, in a partially observable domain, test our approach for learning a collective policy and results show near-optimal policies that exhibit coordinated behavior.

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