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  1. Anna Alexandrova (2006). Connecting Economic Models to the Real World: Game Theory and the Fcc Spectrum Auctions. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 36 (2):173-192.
    Can social phenomena be understood by analyzing their parts? Contemporary economic theory often assumes that they can. The methodology of constructing models which trace the behavior of perfectly rational agents in idealized environments rests on the premise that such models, while restricted, help us isolate tendencies, that is, the stable separate effects of economic causes that can be used to explain and predict economic phenomena. In this paper, I question both the claim that models in economics supply claims about tendencies (...)
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  2. Christian W. Bach & Conrad Heilmann (2011). Agent Connectedness and Backward Induction. International Game Theory Review 13 (2):195-208.
    We conceive of a player in dynamic games as a set of agents, which are assigned the distinct tasks of reasoning and node-specific choices. The notion of agent connectedness measuring the sequential stability of a player over time is then modeled in an extended type-based epistemic framework. Moreover, we provide an epistemic foundation for backward induction in terms of agent connectedness. Besides, it is argued that the epistemic independence assumption underlying backward induction is stronger than usually presumed.
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  3. Pat Barclay & Martin Daly (2003). Humans Should Be Individualistic and Utility-Maximizing, but Not Necessarily “Rational”. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 26 (2):154-155.
    One reason why humans don't behave according to standard game theoretical rationality is because it's not realistic to assume that everyone else is behaving rationally. An individual is expected to have psychological mechanisms that function to maximize his/her long-term payoffs in a world of potentially “irrational” individuals. Psychological decision theory has to be individualistic because individuals make decisions, not groups.
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  4. José Luis Bermúdez (1999). Rationality and the Backwards Induction Argument. Analysis 59 (4):243–248.
    Many philosophers and game theorists have been struck by the thought that the backward induction argument (BIA) for the finite iterated pris- oner’s dilemma (FIPD) recommends a course of action which is grossly counter-intuitive and certainly contrary to the way in which people behave in real-life FIPD-situations (Luce and Raiffa 1957, Pettit and Sugden 1989, Bovens 1997).1 Yet the backwards induction argument puts itself forward as binding upon rational agents. What are we to conclude from this? Is it that people (...)
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  5. William D. Casebeer & James E. Parco (2003). To Have and to Eat Cake: The Biscriptive Role of Game-Theoretic Explanations of Human Choice Behavior. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 26 (2):159-160.
    Game-theoretic explanations of behavior need supplementation to be descriptive; behavior has multiple causes, only some governed by traditional rationality. An evolutionarily informed theory of action countenances overlapping causal domains: neurobiological, psychological, and rational. Colman's discussion is insufficient because he neither evaluates learning models nor qualifies under what conditions his propositions hold. Still, inability to incorporate emotions in axiomatic models highlights the need for a comprehensive theory of functional rationality.
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  6. Boudewijn de Bruin (2008). Reducible and Nonsensical Uses of Game Theory. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 38 (2):247-266.
    The mathematical tools of game theory are frequently used in the social sciences and economic consultancy. But how do they explain social phenomena and support prescriptive judgments? And is the use of game theory really necessary? I analyze the logical form of explanatory and prescriptive game theoretical statements, and argue for two claims: (1) explanatory game theory can and should be reduced to rational choice theory in all cases; and (2) prescriptive game theory gives bad advice in some cases, is (...)
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  7. David L. Dickinson (2000). Ultimatum Decision-Making: A Test of Reciprocal Kindness. Theory and Decision 48 (2):151-177.
    While fairness is often mentioned as a determinant of ultimatum bargaining behavior, few data sets are available that can test theories that incorporate fairness considerations. This paper tests the reciprocal kindness theory in Rabin (1993 Incorporating fairness into game theory and economics, The American Economic Review 83: 1281-1302) as an application to the one-period ultimatum bargaining game. We report on data from 100 ultimatum games that vary the financial stakes of the game from 1 to 15. Responder behavior is strongly (...)
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  8. Branden Fitelson (1999). Review: Models and Reality-A Review of Brian Skyrms's Evolution of the Social Contract. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (1):237 - 241.
    Human beings are peculiar. In laboratory experiments, they often cooperate in one-shot prisoners’ dilemmas, they frequently offer 1/2 and reject low offers in the ultimatum game, and they often bid 1/2 in the game of divide-the-cake All these behaviors are puzzling from the point of view of game theory. The first two are irrational, if utility is measured in a certain way.1 The last isn’t positively irrational, but it is no more rational than other possible actions, since there are infinitely (...)
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  9. Jeffrey Foss (2007). Game Theory for Reformation of Behavioral Science Based on a Mistake. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (1):24-25.
    Gintis assumes the behavioral (=social) sciences are in disarray, and so proposes a theory for their unification. Examination of the unity of the physical sciences reveals he misunderstands the unity of science in general, and so fails to see that the social sciences are already unified with the physical sciences. Another explanation of the differences between them is outlined. (Published Online April 27 2007).
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  10. Anthony S. Gillies & Mary Rigdon (2001). Theory-Testing Experiments in the Economics Laboratory. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (3):410-411.
    Features of experimental design impose auxiliary hypotheses on experimenters. Hertwig & Ortmann rightly argue that the ways some variables are implemented in psychology cloud results, whereas the different implementations in economics provide for more robust results. However, not all design variables support this general conclusion. The repetition of trials may confuse results depending on what theory is being tested. We explore this in the case of simple bargaining games.
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  11. Herbert Gintis (2007). A Framework for the Unification of the Behavioral Sciences. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (1):1-16.
    The various behavioral disciplines model human behavior in distinct and incompatible ways. Yet, recent theoretical and empirical developments have created the conditions for rendering coherent the areas of overlap of the various behavioral disciplines. The analytical tools deployed in this task incorporate core principles from several behavioral disciplines. The proposed framework recognizes evolutionary theory, covering both genetic and cultural evolution, as the integrating principle of behavioral science. Moreover, if decision theory and game theory are broadened to encompass other-regarding preferences, they (...)
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  12. Jeremy R. Gray & Todd S. Braver (2002). Cognitive Control in Altruism and Self-Control: A Social Cognitive Neuroscience Perspective. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (2):260-260.
    The primrose path and prisoner's dilemma paradigms may require cognitive (executive) control: The active maintenance of context representations in lateral prefrontal cortex to provide top-down support for specific behaviors in the face of short delays or stronger response tendencies. This perspective suggests further tests of whether altruism is a type of self-control, including brain imaging, induced affect, and dual-task studies.
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  13. Ebbe Groes, Hans Jørgen Jacobsen, Birgitte Sloth & Torben Tranaes (1998). Nash Equilibrium with Lower Probabilities. Theory and Decision 44 (1):37-66.
    We generalize the concept of Nash equilibrium in mixed strategies for strategic form games to allow for ambiguity in the players' expectations. In contrast to other contributions, we model ambiguity by means of so-called lower probability measures or belief functions, which makes it possible to distinguish between a player's assessment of ambiguity and his attitude towards ambiguity. We also generalize the concept of trembling hand perfect equilibrium. Finally, we demonstrate that for certain attitudes towards ambiguity it is possible to explain (...)
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  14. Till Grüne-Yanoff, Game-Theoretic Models, Stories, and Their Assessment.
    Ever since game theory has become a dominant mode of investigation in economics, critics have pointed out that it is a formally strong but empirically weak, if not empty, practice.1 We argue against the empirical irrelevance of game theory by investigating the architecture of game theoretic explanations more closely. In particular, we study the role of game models, and find that they assume the role of mediators as autonomous relaters of theory and phenomena. We further argue that stories play an (...)
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  15. Benoit Hardy-Vallée & Paul Thagard (2008). How to Play the Ultimatum Game: An Engineering Approach to Metanormativity. Philosophical Psychology 21 (2):173 – 192.
    The ultimatum game is a simple bargaining situation where the behavior of people frequently contradicts the optimal strategy according to classical game theory. Thus, according to many scholars, the commonly observed behavior should be considered irrational. We argue that this putative irrationality stems from a wrong conception of metanormativity (the study of norms about the establishment of norms). After discussing different metanormative conceptions, we defend a Quinean, naturalistic approach to the evaluation of norms. After reviewing empirical literature on the ultimatum (...)
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  16. Steven J. Humphrey (1999). Probability Learning, Event-Splitting Effects and the Economic Theory of Choice. Theory and Decision 46 (1):51-78.
    This paper reports an experiment which investigates a possible cognitive antecedent of event-splitting effects (ESEs) experimentally observed by Starmer and Sugden (1993) and Humphrey (1995) – the learning of absolute frequency of event category impacting on the learning of probability of event category – and reveals some evidence that it is responsible for observed ESEs. It is also suggested and empirically substantiated that stripped-down prospect theory will accurately predict ESEs in some decision making tasks, but will not perform well in (...)
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  17. Harvey S. James Jr & Jeffrey P. Cohen (2004). Does Ethics Training Neutralize the Incentives of the Prisoner's Dilemma? Evidence From a Classroom Experiment. Journal of Business Ethics 50 (1):53 - 61.
    Teaching economics has been shown to encourage students to defect in a prisoner's dilemma game. However, can ethics training reverse that effect and promote cooperation? We conducted an experiment to answer this question. We found that students who had the ethics module had higher rates of cooperation than students without the ethics module, even after controlling for communication and other factors expected to affect cooperation. We conclude that the teaching of ethics can mitigate the possible adverse incentives of the prisoner's (...)
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  18. Chantale LaCasse & Don Ross (1994). The Microeconomic Interpretation of Games. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1994:379 - 387.
    This paper is part of a larger project defending of the foundations of microeconomics against recent criticisms by philosophers. Here, we undermine one source of these criticisms, arising from philosophers' disappointment with the performance of microeconomic tools, in particular game theory, when these are applied to normative decision theory. Hollis and Sugden have recently articulated such disappointment in a sophisticated way, and have argued on the basis of it that the economic conception of rationality is inadequate. We argue, however, that (...)
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  19. Susanne Lohmann (1995). The Poverty of Green and Shapiro. Critical Review 9 (1-2):127-154.
    Donald Green and Ian Shapiro argue that rational choice scholarship in political science is excessively theory?driven: too few of its theoretical insights have been subjected to serious empirical scrutiny and survived. But rational choice theorizing has the potential to identify and correct logical inconsistencies and slippages. It is thus valuable even if the resulting theories are not tested empirically. When Green and Shapiro's argument concerning collective dilemmas and free riding is formalized, it turns out to be deeply flawed and in (...)
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  20. Duncan MacIntosh (1989). Two Gauthiers? Dialogue 28 (01):43-.
    David Gauthier claims that it can be rational to co-operate in a prisoner's dilemma if one has adopted a disposition constraining one's self from maximizing one's individual expected utility, i.e., a constrained maximizer disposition. But I claim cooperation cannot be both voluntary and constrained. In resolving this tension I ask what constrained maximizer dispositions might be. One possibility is that they are rationally acquired, irrevocable psychological mechanisms which determine but do not rationalize cooperation. Another possibility is that they are rationally (...)
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  21. Philippe Mongin, A Game-Theoretic Analysis of the Waterloo Campaign and Some Comments on the Analytic Narrative Project.
    The paper has a twofold aim. On the one hand, it provides what appears to be the first game-theoretic modeling of Napoleon’s last campaign, which ended dramatically on 18 June 1815 at Waterloo. It is specifically concerned with the decision Napoleon made on 17 June 1815 to detach part of his army against the Prussians he had defeated, though not destroyed, on 16 June at Ligny. Military historians agree that this decision was crucial but disagree about whether it was rational. (...)
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  22. Cédric Paternotte (2012). Minimal Cooperation. Philosophy of the Social Sciences (1):0048393112457428.
    Most definitions of cooperation provide sufficient but not necessary conditions. This paper describes a form of minimal cooperation, corresponding to mass actions implying many agents, such as demonstrations. It characterizes its intentional, epistemic, strategic, and teleological aspects, mostly obtained from weakening classical concepts. The rationality of minimal cooperation turns out to be part of its definition, whereas it is usually considered as an optional though desirable feature. Game-theoretic concepts thus play an important role in its definition. The paper concludes by (...)
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  23. Richard Reiner (1995). Arguments Against the Possibility of Perfect Rationality. Minds and Machines 5 (3):373-89.
    Many different arguments against the possibility of perfect rationality have appeared in the literature, and these target several different conceptions of perfect rationality. It is not clear how these different conceptions of perfect rationality are related, nor is it clear how the arguments showing their impossibility are related, and it is especially unclear what the impossibility results show when taken together. This paper gives an exposition of the different conceptions of perfect rationality, an the various sorts of argument against them; (...)
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  24. Robert C. Robinson (2006). Bounded Epistemology. Ssrn Elibrary.
    Game theory is a branch of economics that uses powerful mathematical models to predict what agents ought to do when interacting with other agents strategically. Bounded rationality is a sub-field of game theory that sets out to explain why, in some interesting cases, people don't act according their utility maximizing strategies, as described by game theory. Interactive Epistemology is formal tool used by Game Theorists and computer scientists to model interactive cases of knowledge. This interesting and useful tool has been (...)
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  25. Don Ross (2001). The Game-Theoretic Innocence of Experimental Behavioral Psychology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (3):426-427.
    Hertwig and Ortmann imply that failure of many behavioral psychologists to observe several central methodological principles of experimental economics derives mainly from differences in disciplinary culture. I suggest that there are deeper philosophical causes, based (ironically) on a legacy of methodological individualism in psychology from which economists have substantially cured themselves through use of game theory. Psychologists often misidentify their objects of study by trying to wrench subjects out of their normal behavioral contexts in games.
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  26. Raimo Tuomela (2009). Beyond Individual Choice: Teams and Frames in Game Theory , Michael Bacharach; Edited and with an Introduction and a Conclusion by Natalie Gold and Robert Sugden. Princeton University Press, Princeton, 2006, XXIII + 214 Pp. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 25 (1):125-133.
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  27. James Woodward (2008). Social Preferences in Experimental Economics. Philosophy of Science 75 (5):646-657.
    This article explores some issues having to do with the use of experimental results from one‐shot games to reach conclusions about the existence of social preferences that are taken to figure in the explanation of cooperation in repeated interactions in real life. †To contact the author, please write to: Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125; e‐mail: jfw@hss.caltech.edu.
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