IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Take or Leave? Distribution in Asymmetric One‐Off Conflict


  • Anthony de Jasay
  • Werner Güth
  • Hartmut Kliemt
  • Axel Ockenfels


Most social scientists' views of conflict and cooperation in society are shaped by very elementary, one‐off, two by two symmetric simultaneous move games like prisoner's dilemma, chicken, assurance or stag hunt. We think that this diet of examples leads to biased accounts in particular of distributional conflict, and therefore suggest that asymmetry in payoffs and move structure be taken into account systematically. In this paper a new paradigm of asymmetric games to study basic distributional conflicts is introduced, illustrated numerically and discussed theoretically. The results of exploratory experiments on the empirical side of the matter are also reported. Die sozialwissenschaftlichen Auffassungen von Konflikt und Kooperation in der Gesellschaft werden wesentlich von elementaren einmalig wiederholten symmetrischen 2 × 2‐Spielen mit simultan durchgeführten Zügen wie zwei Personen Gefangenen‐Dilemma, Chicken, Assurance oder Stag hunt geprägt. Diese einseitige Diät von Beispielen führt nach unserer Auffassung zu einem verzerrten Verständnis insbesondere von Verteilungskonflikten, weshalb wir vorschlagen, Asymmetrien der Auszahlungs‐ und Zugstruktur systematisch zu berücksichtigen. Im vorliegenden Aufsatz wird dementsprechend ein neues elementares Paradigma für Verteilungskonflikte als asymmetrische Spiele eingeführt. Diese werden numerisch illustriert und theoretisch diskutiert. Die Resultate einiger explorativer Experimente zur empirischen Seite der Angelegenheit werden ebenfalls skizziert. Conflit et coopération sociaux sont le plus souvent conçus en termes de jeux simples, non répétés, effectués deux par deux, symétriques et simultanés tels que le dilemme du prisonnier, ‘chicken’, assurance ou ‘stag hunt’. Il nous semble qu'un tel ensemble d'exemples donne une optique déformée notamment du conflit distributionnel. Nous proposons donc de tenir systématiquement compte de l'asymétrie des gains et des structures des jeux. Dans le présent article, nous introduisons un nouveau paradigme des conflits distributionnels comme jeux asymétriques, que nous soumettons à une illustration numérique et une analyse théorique. Est également présentée une ébauche de résultats expérimentaux pour démontrer l'aspect empirique.

Suggested Citation

  • Anthony de Jasay & Werner Güth & Hartmut Kliemt & Axel Ockenfels, 2004. "Take or Leave? Distribution in Asymmetric One‐Off Conflict," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 217-235, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:57:y:2004:i:2:p:217-235
    DOI: 10.1111/j.0023-5962.2004.00251.x

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Martin Beckenkamp & Heike Hennig-Schmidt & Frank P. Maier-Rigaud, 2007. "Cooperation in Symmetric and Asymmetric Prisoner's Dilemma Games," Discussion Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2006_25, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:57:y:2004:i:2:p:217-235. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley Content Delivery). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.