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Market engineering: insights from two decades of research on markets and information
Gimpel H., Neumann D., Seifert S., Veit D., Krämer J., Pfeiffer J., Teubner T., Weidlich A., Springer International Publishing, Cham, Switzerland, 2021. 253 pp.  Type: Book (978-3-030666-60-6)
Date Reviewed: Jul 27 2022

This special book is mostly devoted to honoring one person, who, thanks to his activity and outstanding ideas, was able to influence many people involved in widely understood information engineering, marketing engineering, market design, and service science. Christof Weinhardt is a full professor at the Institute for Information Systems and Management (IISM) at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). Since the 90s, he has been a very active participant and member of different projects and scientific communities, which has allowed him to gain working experience and obtain many important successes in research and education. For instance, let’s note that, so far, he has been a supervisor of more than 90 doctorate dissertations, so it is obvious that he is a person who significantly affects the fate and careers of many people. And some of these people decided to write a book that not only shows the current state of the art in information and market engineering, but also new trends, paradigm changes, and future challenges in the surrounding reality.

Today, in a post-pandemic world, we are forced to meet with many new issues that require unconventional (out-of-the-box) thinking. The spectrum of these issues can be very wide, and in our interconnected, highly complex world it is not easy to split them; however, depending on the problem, one can indicate the important factors, phenomena, and challenges that need special attention. From looking at the table of contents, readers will see 14 chapters plus one extra--a poem for the book’s hero. These parts refer to very deep thoughts and experiences that are not only a pure academic discussion, but also refer to real-world problems. It will be a trivial statement, but nowadays information systems are at the core of many institutional and personal activities, thus their influence on our daily life is greater than ever before. Taking into account that “markets are an essential tool to coordinate complex systems,” one can focus on the problem of how to support market design in order to determine market success together with high-throughput computer-based solutions.

While it may seem that this is only a pure engineering approach not related to any emotional issues, the book also contains chapters devoted to analyzing how sentiment influences future stock returns and the emotional aspects of bidding behavior based on neurophysiological measurements. Even more, the reader can find interesting study about practicing modelers’ conceptual modeling, modeling decisions, faced learning difficulties in modeling, and overcoming these difficulties. This is important because good market design is key. Note, for example, the modern challenges of transitioning “toward a more sustainable energy supply for all”--it’s not easy to convince many that this seems to be not only a hot topic, but also an important step in human development. The current trends in education and increasing possibilities of technological solutions allow for the use of immersive systems that are, “in particular, capable of addressing challenges regarding awareness, motivation, information transfer, and educating citizens to act in a sustainable manner”; this is also considered in one chapter. And finally, one chapter proposes a socialoid as “an integrated collection of data and models about a society.” It is used to build a computational model for Philadelphia.

Anyone familiar with Christof Weinhardt’s achievements (papers, projects, events, seminars) should read this book for a closer look at his concepts, proposals, ideas, interesting thoughts, and research activities.

Reviewer:  Dominik Strzalka Review #: CR147478
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