Standard Article

Wardrop Equilibria

  1. José R. Correa1,
  2. Nicolás E. Stier-Moses2

Published Online: 15 FEB 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470400531.eorms0962

Wiley Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Science

Wiley Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Science

How to Cite

Correa, J. R. and Stier-Moses, N. E. 2011. Wardrop Equilibria. Wiley Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Science. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    Universidad de Chile, Industrial Engineering Department, Santiago, Chile

  2. 2

    Columbia University, Graduate School of Business, New York, New York

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 FEB 2011


Wardrop equilibria are commonly used as a solution concept of network games when modeling transportation and telecommunication networks with congestion. This concept assumes that players select a route that minimizes the time or cost incurred in its traversal. This behavioral assumption admits convenient mathematical descriptions, and efficient algorithms for the computation of equilibria are available. For this reason, planners have been making use of this concept for decades for evaluating projects, optimizing tolls, estimating demands, and a myriad applications arising from extensions of the basic model. In this article, we introduce the basic model, explain strategies for computation of equilibria, and discuss the extent of the inefficiency arising from the selfish behavior of the players. In addition, we provide some generalizations of the basic model.


  • traffic assignment problem;
  • multicommodity flow problem;
  • selfish routing;
  • noncooperative game theory;
  • nonatomic congestion game;
  • Nash equilibrium