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How democracy resolves conflict in difficult games

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  • Brams, Steven J.
  • Kilgour, D. Marc

Abstract

Democracy resolves conflicts in difficult games like Prisoners’ Dilemma and Chicken by stabilizing their cooperative outcomes. It does so by transforming these games into games in which voters are presented with a choice between a cooperative outcome and a Pareto-inferior noncooperative outcome. In the transformed game, it is always rational for voters to vote for the cooperative outcome, because cooperation is a weakly dominant strategy independent of the decision rule and the number of voters who choose it. Such games are illustrated by 2-person and n-person public-goods games, in which it is optimal to be a free rider, and a biblical story from the book of Exodus.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 12751.

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Date of creation: Oct 2008
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:12751

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Related research

Keywords: Democracy; voting; social choice; public goods; game theory; Prisoners' Dilemma; Bible;

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  1. I. D. Hill, 2008. "Mathematics and Democracy: Designing Better Voting and Fair-division Procedures," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 171(4), pages 1032-1033.
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Cited by:
  1. Peter J. Wood, 2010. "Climate Change and Game Theory: A Mathematical Survey," CCEP Working Papers, Centre for Climate Economics & Policy, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University 0210, Centre for Climate Economics & Policy, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.

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