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THE AGENCIES METHOD FOR MODELING COALITIONS AND COOPERATION IN GAMES

John Nash

International Game Theory Review (IGTR), 2008, vol. 10, issue 04, 539-564

Abstract: The idea leading to this study originated some time ago when I talked at a gathering of high school graduates at a summer science camp. I spoke about the theme of "the evolution of cooperation" (in Nature) and about how that topic was amenable to studies involving Game Theory (which, more frequently, has been used in research in economics).After that event I was stimulated to think of the possibility of modeling cooperation in games through actions of acceptance in which one player could simply accept the "agency" of another player or of an existing coalition of players.The action of acceptance would have the form of being entirely cooperative, as if "altruistic", and not at all competitive, but there was also the idea that the game would be studied under circumstances of repetition and that every player would have the possibility of reacting in a non-cooperative fashion to any undesirable pattern of behavior of any another player. Thus the game studied would be analogous to the repeated games of "Prisoner's Dilemma" variety that have been studied in theoretical biology.These studies of "PD" (or "Prisoner's Dilemma") games have revealed the paradoxical possibility of the natural evolution of cooperative behavior when the interacting organisms or species are presumed only to be endowed with self-interested motivations, thus motivations of a non-cooperative type.

JEL-codes: B4 C0 C6 C7 D5 D7 M2 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008
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DOI: 10.1142/S0219198908002084

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