Game Theory and “Convention‘

Synthese 46 (1):41 - 93 (1981)
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Abstract

A feature of David Lewis's account of conventions in his book "Convention" which has received admiring notices from philosophers is his use of the mathematical theory of games. In this paper I point out a number of serious flaws in Lewis's use of game theory. Lewis's basic claim is that conventions cover 'coordination problems'. I show that game-Theoretical analysis tends to establish that coordination problems in Lewis's sense need not underlie conventions.

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2009-01-28

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Margaret Gilbert
University of California, Irvine

Citations of this work

Modality and Meaning.William G. Lycan - 1994 - Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Game Theory and the Evolution of Behaviour.J. Maynard Smith - 1984 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 7 (1):95.
Convention.Michael Rescorla - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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