Game Theory in the Social Sciences

Luca Lambertini

Game Theory in the Social Sciences
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Product details

Published31st March 2011
ISBN9781136737602
Price£104.16
Print ISBN9781136737602
Author
PublisherRoutledge
Pages208
LanguageEnglish
Subjects:Microeconomics, Economics
Thema 1.1:KCC, KC
BIC 2.1:KCC, KC
BISAC:BUS000000, BUS069000, BUS044000
123Library ID:83382
Format:eBook

eBook Overview

Individuals, firms, governments and nations behave strategically, for good and bad. Over the last few decades, game theory has been constructed and progressively refined to become the major tool used by social scientists to understand, predict and regulate strategic interaction among agents who often have conflicting interests. In the surprisingly anodyne jargon of the theory, they ‘play games’. This book offers an introduction to the basic tools of game theory and an overview of a number of applications to real-world cases, covering the areas of economics, politics and international relations. Each chapter is accompanied by some suggestions about further reading.

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Table of Contents

Game Theory in the Social Sciences: A reader-friendly guide4
Copyright 5
Contents 8
List of figures10
Preface12
1 The origins: a bit of history16
1.1 Giant steps16
1.2 Hidden truths?20
2 What is a game?26
2.1 The structure of a game28
2.2 A brief taxonomy of games29
2.3 Alternative representations31
3 Solving a game 36
3.1 The maximin (or minimax) equilibrium 37
3.2 Refinements of the Nash equilibrium 41
3.3 Warnings 51
3.4 Risk dominance 54
3.5 Nash equilibrium in mixed strategies 54
3.6 Appendix: Schrödinger’s paradox 58
4 Understanding economics 62
4.1 Industrial economics 62
4.2 Monetary and fiscal policies 78
4.3 Natural resources and the environment 81
5 Repeated games and collusive behaviour 84
5.1 The prisoners’ dilemma revisited 84
5.2 Time and time discounting 85
5.3 Finite or infinite horizon?87
5.4 The folk theorems 88
5.5 The chain store paradox 97
6 Understanding politics 100
6.1 Voting paradoxes 100
6.2 A spatial model of political competition 103
6.3 The robustness of the median voter theorem 105
6.4 Electoral campaigns 108
6.5 How about being re-elected? 109
7 Wargames 112
7.1 The battle of the Bismarck Sea 112
7.2 Overlord 114
7.3 Escalation as an all-pay auction 116
7.4 Mutually assured destruction and the Cuban missile crisis 118
7.5 The Euromissiles crisis 120
7.6 Hawks, doves and Star Wars 123
8 Trade, security and hegemony 128
8.1 International cooperation and free trade 128
8.2 Guns versus butter and the trade-off between openness and security 132
8.3 The persistence of unipolarism 134
8.4 Appendix: the game between satellites 141
9 The role of information 144
9.1 Asymmetric information 145
9.2 Incomplete information 151
9.3 Forward induction 159
9.4 Appendix: Bayes’ rule 162
10 Bargaining and cooperation 164
10.1 Bargaining games: the axiomatic approach 165
10.2 Cooperative games: a matter of coalitions 169
10.3 Examples 172
Notes180
Bibliography 188
Index 200