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Linking Strategic Interaction and Bargaining Theory: The Harsanyi-Schelling Debate on the Axiom of Symmetry

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  • Alessandro Innocenti

Abstract

This paper analyzes the early contributions of John Harsanyi and Thomas C. Schelling to bargaining theory. In the 1950s, Harsanyi draws Nash's solution to two-person cooperative games from the bargaining model proposed by Zeuthen (1930), and Schelling proposes a multifaceted theory of conflict that, without dismissing the assumption of rational behavior, points out some of its paradoxical consequences. Harsanyi's and Schelling's contrasting views on the axiom of symmetry, as postulated by Nash (1950), are then presented. This debate explains why, although in the early 1960s two different approaches to link strategic interaction and bargaining theory were proposed, only Harsanyi's insights were fully developed later.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Duke University Press in its journal History of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 40 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 (Spring)
Pages: 111-132

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Handle: RePEc:hop:hopeec:v:40:y:2008:i:1:p:111-132

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Keywords: John Harsanyi; Thomas C. Schelling; axiom of symmetry;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Alessandro Innocenti, 2008. "How can a psychologist inform economics? The strange case of Sidney Siegel," Department of Economic Policy, Finance and Development (DEPFID) University of Siena 0808, Department of Economic Policy, Finance and Development (DEPFID), University of Siena.
  2. Attanasi, Giuseppe & Garcia-Gallego, Aurora & Georgantzis, Nikolaos & Montesano, Aldo, 2011. "An Experiment on Prisoner’s Dilemma with Confirmed Proposals," TSE Working Papers 11-274, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
  3. Giuseppe Attanasi & Aurora García Gallego & Nikolaos Georgantzís & Aldo Montesano, 2010. "Non-cooperative games with chained confirmed proposals," LERNA Working Papers 10.02.308, LERNA, University of Toulouse.
  4. Innocenti, Alessandro, 2010. "How a psychologist informed economics: The case of Sidney Siegel," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 421-434, June.
  5. Attanasi, Giuseppe & Garcia-Gallego, Aurora & Georgantzis, Nikolaos & Montesano, Aldo, 2011. "An Experiment on Prisoner’s Dilemma with Confirmed Proposals," LERNA Working Papers 11.23.357, LERNA, University of Toulouse.

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