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Fight or Flight?

  • Cary Deck

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR, USA
    Economic Science Institute, Chapman University, Orange, CA, USA)

  • Roman M. Sheremeta

    (Argyros School of Business and Economics, Chapman University, Orange, CA, USA)

This article examines theory and behavior in a two-player game of siege, sequential attack and defense. The attacker’s objective is to successfully win at least one battle, while the defender’s objective is to win every battle. Theoretically, the defender either folds immediately or, if his valuation is sufficiently high and the number of battles is sufficiently small, then he has a constant incentive to fight in each battle. Attackers respond to defense with diminishing assaults over time. Consistent with theoretical predictions, the authors’ experimental results indicate that the probability of successful defense increases in the defenders valuation and it decreases in the overall number of battles in the contest. However, the defender engages in the contest significantly more often than predicted and the aggregate expenditures by both parties exceed predicted levels. Moreover, both defenders and attackers actually increase the intensity of the fight as they approach the end of the contest.

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File URL: http://jcr.sagepub.com/content/56/6/1069.abstract
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Article provided by Peace Science Society (International) in its journal Journal of Conflict Resolution.

Volume (Year): 56 (2012)
Issue (Month): 6 (December)
Pages: 1069-1088

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Handle: RePEc:sae:jocore:v:56:y:2012:i:6:p:1069-1088
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://pss.la.psu.edu/

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  7. Roman M. Sheremeta, 2009. "Experimental Comparison of Multi-Stage and One-Stage Contests," Working Papers 09-04, Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.
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