Read e-book online Game Theory. Critical Introduction PDF

By Hargreaves

ISBN-10: 0203199278

ISBN-13: 9780203199275

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The difficult thing in all likelihood, as we have argued above, is to know always what a rational opponent of known preferences will do. But so long as 29 GAME THEORY we have sorted this out for each type of player and we know the chances of encountering each type, then the fact that we do not know the identity of the opponent is a complication, but not a serious one. To see the point, suppose we know left-footed people are slower moving to the right than the left and vice versa. Then we know the best thing to do in soccer is to try and dribble past a left-footed opponent on their right and vice versa.

Again it is easy to see how once this assumption has been made, the analysis of play in this game will be essentially the same as the case where there is no uncertainty about your opponent’s identity. We have argued before that you will choose the action which yields the highest expected utility. This requires that you work out the probability of your opponent taking various actions because their action affects the pay-offs to you from each of your actions. When you know the identity of your opponent, this means you have to work out the probability of that kind of an opponent taking any particular action.

It comes from the dissonance between our self-image as individuals who are authors of our own action and our manifest lack of reason for acting. It is like a crisis of self-respect and we seek to remove it by creating reasons. In short we often rationalise our actions ex post rather than reason ex ante to take them as the instrumental model suggests. This type of dissonance has probably been experienced by all of us at one time or another and there is much evidence that we both change our preferences and change our beliefs about how actions contribute to preference satisfaction so as to rationalise the actions we have taken (see Aronson, 1988).

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Game Theory. Critical Introduction by Hargreaves


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