As co-founder of Auctionomics, Dr. Console Battilana oversees the design markets team and has implemented software for complex auctions around the globe. Her deep knowledge of major auction formats and implementation across multiple industries, such as spectrum, oil, gas, procurement and financial markets, positions her as an innovative thought leader in this market. She has acted as project manager on several high stakes auctions in the U.S., Canada, Australia and many European countries as well as Africa and Latin America.
Dr. Console Battilana manages all negotiations for the company and served as project manager overseeing theory and software implementation for the $19 billion US FCC (Federal Communications Commission) Incentive Auction. The U.S. radio frequency spectrum auctions were extremeply complex and the innovative market design was recognized with a 2020 Nobel Prize in Economics. The auction design generated more than $100 billion for the U.S. Treasury and brought reliable high-speed digital connectivity to hundreds of millions of Americans. The auction reallocated spectrum to higher-value uses while giving incumbent broadcasters the option to remain on the air. The success of the Incentive Auction demonstrates the potential and power of market design, which seeks to refine marketplaces, exchanges and matchings to improve the allocation of scarce resources. The general problem – meeting shifting demands while accommodating existing uses – is common to other contexts, especially in environmental management.
Dr. Console Battilana works on the most cutting-edge auction designs and is constantly pushing the boundaries of auction theory and implementation. Designing new markets with complex constraints requires both novel economic theory and real-world practice. New market design can be applied across numerous industries to create solutions for complex issues and often draws upon ideas from computer science and game theory. Especially when the stakes are multi-billion industries and the constraints are very complicated.
Auctionomics is at the forefront of this innovation and Dr. Console Battilana has used market design to improve allocations in varying contexts – from spectrum rights to access to fisheries in Chile. Market design will also be critical to solving the environmental resource problem of water allocation. Existing rights to freshwater such as surface water and groundwater have been granted in complex ways to cities, farmers and industrial users. These restrictions and historical rules have led to inefficient allocations and water is unavailable to those that need it. Trades are limited or prevented, and poor price signals make it difficult to assess which uses are most valuable. Market design can redefine water rights/access and allow different users to transfer their water allocations on equal terms. Property rights and the marketplace could be designed in a way that does not force any user to give up or sell their rights but allows voluntary transfers. Allocating water efficiently and fairly will require innovation, collaboration and regulation. Market design offers practical economic theory and mechanisms that can harness new technologies, bring together diverse participants, and accommodate the public good. This is a topic Dr. Console Battilana is incredibly passionate about and advocating for on an international scale.