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Bounded rationality, strategy simplification, and equilibrium


  • Hubie Chen



It is frequently suggested that predictions made by game theory could be improved by considering computational restrictions when modeling agents. Under the supposition that players in a game may desire to balance maximization of payoff with minimization of strategy complexity, Rubinstein and co-authors studied forms of Nash equilibrium where strategies are maximally simplified in that no strategy can be further simplified without sacrificing payoff. Inspired by this line of work, we introduce a notion of equilibrium whereby strategies are also maximally simplified, but with respect to a simplification procedure that is more careful in that a player will not simplify if the simplification incents other players to deviate. We study such equilibria in two-player machine games in which players choose finite automata that succinctly represent strategies for repeated games; in this context, we present techniques for establishing that an outcome is at equilibrium and present results on the structure of equilibria. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Hubie Chen, 2013. "Bounded rationality, strategy simplification, and equilibrium," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 42(3), pages 593-611, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jogath:v:42:y:2013:i:3:p:593-611 DOI: 10.1007/s00182-011-0293-7

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ben-porath, Elchanan, 1990. "The complexity of computing a best response automaton in repeated games with mixed strategies," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 1-12, March.
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