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Incomplete Information and Experimentation in the Arts: A Game Theory Approach

Roberto Cellini () and Tiziana Cuccia

Economia politica, 2003, issue 1, 21-34

Abstract: In this paper we take an incomplete - information game approach to study the rational choice of artists regarding the experimentation content of their work, and the private profit-seeking financier decision to finance arts projects. Experimentation leads to lower profit for the financier and to higher utility for innovative artists. We find the Bayes perfect Nash equilibrium and show that the number of innovators in the artists' population has opposite effects on the occurrence of experimentation in arts. The higher the proportion is of innovative artists, the better it is for an innovative artist to experiment; however, the higher the proportion is of innovative artists, the lower the expected profit for the financier, and hence the more difficult it is to obtain funds for the artist. Thus, the presence of conservative artists is a necessary condition to guarantee the possibility of private financing for arts, and experimentation in arts can take place thanks to the market mechanism even without public intervention.

Date: 2003
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