A – Z of Game Theory

A – Auctions – There are four main types of auction

  • First price sealed bid auctions – everyone puts a bid in a sealed envelope, the highest bid wins and pays the price they bid
  • Second price sealed bid auctions (Vickrey auctions) – same as the first price auction but the winning bidder doesn’t pay the price they bid, they pay the second highest price that was bid.
  • English auctions – The price is gradually raised by the auctioneer until there is only one bidder remaining.
  • Dutch auctions – The price is gradually reduced until someone is willing to pay the price that the auctioneer has dropped down to.

B – Battle of the Sexes – a co-operation game

C – Chicken – fight or flight – are you a chicken?

D – Dictator – a game looking a human behaviours

E – Evolution – evolutionary game theory is a major branch of the subject

F – Forms – normal & extensive – different ways to represent games

G – Global warming – often cited as an example of the tragedy of the commons game

H – Hunt (Stag) – a game studying co-operation

I – Information (perfect, non-perfect) – depends on how much the players can see of each others moves

J – John Nash – made famous by A Beautiful Mind

K – Kuhn poker – a simplified version of poker to make it easier to analyse

L – Large Poisson game – a game with a random number of players

M – Oskar Morgenstern – one of the founders of game theory

N – Nash equilibrium – Named after John Nash, the position in a game where each player has nothing to gain from changing their strategy

O – Overfishing – another example of the tragedy of the commons

P – Prisoners Dilemma – the first game that introduces everyone to game theory

Q – Quantum game theory

R – Rock, Paper, Scissors – simple game which introduces mixed strategies

S – Schelling point – also known as a focal point. A natural strategy that people will tend to choose

T – Traveller’s dilemma – what might happen if you lost your luggage

U – Ultimatum – a game where people turn down free money if the offer isn’t ‘fair’

V – Voting – there is a lot of game theory analysis of voting patterns and behaviors

W – Weakly dominant strategy – a strategy that is always at least as good as any other strategy, whatever strategy the other player chooses.

X – MiXed strategy –  the optimum strategy in a game is often to mix up the possible strategies

Y – You can comment if you can think of a ‘Y’!

Z – Zero sum game – a game where one player’s gain is matched by another player’s loss

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