Association between games

The last ten years the credo 'history matters' has been employed a lot in several disciplines of social science. Within game theory the only way history matters is when the same game is repeated several times, be it a finite or infinite number of times. However, people also play different games through time. When two players play games against each other they build up a history together. Players know how the other player played in the previous game. What if that previous game is a different game instead of the same game? History still matters! The players can incorporate the actions, behaviour or play of previous games into their perception of the game at hand.

Game theorists have not investigated the idea of a former game influencing a different second game. Game theory should be able to describe the behaviour of individuals, and in that sense be able to explain what happens in interaction situations. When looking at people interacting in everyday life one can see that people constantly have encounters with one another in different situations, i.e. they are playing different games. The games they play one after another are sometimes the same, called a repeated game, but most of the time the games are different. I developed an approach in order to see how we can model and analyse people playing different games against each other instead of the same game: this approach I call the associative approach.

cover association between games Central theme in my dissertation is the development of a (mathematical) model that is able to connect two distinctively different games, which is tested in an experiment. Both the theoretical and experimental focus of the dissertation are (going to be) treated in separate papers.
  • Marks, P.K. (2002), Association between games: a theoretical and empirical investigation of a new explanatory model in game theory, Amsterdam: ThelaThesis
  • You can find my dissertation in pfd-format here.
  • Submitted to International journal of game theory: Marks, P.K. (forthcoming), Association between games: rationalizing behavior in two distinctively different games
  • Work in progress: Marks, P.K., Association between games: an experimental study


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