Lecture 1 - Introduction to Game Theory: five first lessons

author: Benjamin Polak, Department of Economics, Yale University
recorded by: Yale University
published: Nov. 15, 2010,   recorded: September 2007,   views: 3472
released under terms of: Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)
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Description

We introduce Game Theory by playing a game. We organize the game into players, their strategies, and their goals or payoffs; and we learn that we should decide what our goals are before we make choices. With some plausible payoffs, our game is a prisoners' dilemma. We learn that we should never choose a dominated strategy; but that rational play by rational players can lead to bad outcomes. We discuss some prisoners' dilemmas in the real world and some possible real-world remedies. With other plausible payoffs, our game is a coordination problem and has very different outcomes: so different payoffs matter. We often need to think, not only about our own payoffs, but also others' payoffs. We should put ourselves in others' shoes and try to predict what they will do. This is the essence of strategic thinking.

Reading assignment:

Strategies and Games: Theory And Practice. (Dutta): Chapter 1, Sections 1-3

Strategy: An Introduction to Game Theory. (Watson): Chapter 1

Resources:

Summary Lecture 1 [PDF]
Blackboard Notes Lecture 1 [PDF]

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Reviews and comments:

Comment1 Mike, January 3, 2011 at 2:59 p.m.:

5 stars for this enthusiastic speaker!


Comment2 Fitim Sylejmani, April 15, 2013 at 4:50 a.m.:

Hi there,

This is quite good explanation

Thanks

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