Hanyi Chen (University of Edinburgh)

Probabilistic matching systems: stability, fluid and diffusion approximations and optimal control
Wednesday 25 March 2015 at 15.00, JCMB 6206


In this work we introduce a novel queueing model with two classes of users in which, instead of accessing a resource, users wait in the system to match with a candidate from the other class. The users are selective and the matchings occur probabilistically. This new model is useful for analysing the traffic in web portals that match people who provide a service with people who demand the same service, e.g. employment portals, matrimonial and dating sites and rental portals. We first provide a Markov chain model for analysing the stability of these systems and derive the probability distribution of the number of matches up to some finite time given the number of arrivals. Further, to gain more insight into the behaviour of probabilistic matching systems, we propose approximation methods based on fluid and diffusion limits using different scalings. Finally we study the optimal control and revenue management for the systems with the objective of profit maximization. We formulate mathematical models for both unobservable and observable systems. For an unobservable system we suggest a deterministic optimal control, while for an observable system we develop an optimal myopic state dependent pricing.

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