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First-Mover Advantage In Two-Sided Competitions: An Experimental Comparison Of Role-Assignment Rules

  • Bradley J. Ruffle



  • Oscar Volij



Kingston (1976) and Anderson (1977) show that the probability that a given contestant wins a best-of-2k+1 series of asymmetric, zero-sum, binary-outcome games is, for a large class of assignment rules, independent of which contestant is assigned the advantageous role in each component game. We design a laboratory experiment to test this hypothesis for four simple role-assignment rules. Despite the fact that play does not uniformly conform to the equilibrium, our results show that the four assignment rules are observationally equivalent at the series level: the fraction of series won by a given contestant and all other series outcomes do not differ across the four rules.

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Paper provided by Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1208.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bgu:wpaper:1208
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  1. Binmore, Ken, 2007. "Playing for Real: A Text on Game Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195300574.
  2. Wooders, John & Shachat, Jason M., 2001. "On the Irrelevance of Risk Attitudes in Repeated Two-Outcome Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 342-363, February.
  3. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
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