D. Bernstein, R. Givan, and N. Immerman, and, S. Zilberstein "The Complexity of Decentralized Control of Markov Decision Processes". Mathematics of Operations Research, 27(4) (2002), 819 - 840.

Abstract: We consider decentralized control of Markov decision processes and give complexity bounds on the worst-case running time for algorithms that find optimal solutions. Generalizations of both the fully- observable case and the partially-observable case that allow for decentralized control are described. For even two agents, the finite-horizon problems corresponding to both of these models are hard for non- deterministic exponential time. These complexity results illustrate a fundamental difference between centralized and decentralized control of Markov decision processes. In contrast to the problems involving centralized control, the problems we consider provably do not admit polynomial-time algorithms. Furthermore, assuming EXPTIME ≠ NEXPTIME, the problems require super-exponential time to solve in the worst case.

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