An agent-based approach to flexible commerce in intermediary - Centric electronic markets

Duen-Ren Liu*, Tzyy Feng Hwang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The growth of electronic-markets (e-markets) necessitates the processing of many commerce protocols (processes). Each protocol handles different messages and flows of transactions among customers, merchants and intermediaries. Developing applications for each commerce protocol is costly and impractical. Accordingly, developing a flexible model of Internet commerce to support various commerce protocols is important. Moreover, the emergence of intermediaries is inevitable as e-markets grow. This work analyzes various trading processes and the roles of intermediaries, and proposes a flexible agent-based model of intermediary - centric commerce. The proposed model applies basic transaction functions to compose various commerce protocols. Agent technology and an event-driven approach are employed to process flexibly the complex trading interactions among the participants. The agent-based approach enhances scalability and makes complex trading interactions more tractable. Furthermore, an agent-based prototype system is deployed. The novel system is extensible and facilitates flexible trading interactions to support various commerce protocols in e-markets.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-48
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Network and Computer Applications
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • Agent
  • E-commerce
  • Electronic market
  • Flexible commerce
  • Intermediary


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