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To Mobilize of Not to Mobilize: Catch 22s in International Crises

  • Brams, S.J.

IN his classic novel, "Catch-22" (1961), Joseph Heller describes a thoroughly frustrating situation faced by a combat pilot in World War II. This is generalized to a "generic" 2x2 strict ordinal game, in which whatever strategy the column player chooses, the best response of the row player is to inflict on the column player a worst or next-worst outcome, and possibly vice-versa. The 12 specific games subsumed by the generic game are called catch-22 games.

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File URL: http://econ.as.nyu.edu/docs/IO/9381/RR98-11.PDF
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Paper provided by C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University in its series Working Papers with number 98-11.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cvs:starer:98-11
Contact details of provider: Postal: C.V. Starr Center, Department of Economics, New York University, 19 W. 4th Street, 6th Floor, New York, NY 10012
Phone: (212) 998-8936
Fax: (212) 995-3932
Web page: http://econ.as.nyu.edu/object/econ.cvstarr.html
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Order Information: Postal: C.V. Starr Center, Department of Economics, New York University, 19 W. 4th Street, 6th Floor, New York, NY 10012
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  1. Mailath George J. & Samuelson Larry & Swinkels Jeroen M., 1994. "Normal Form Structures in Extensive Form Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 325-371, December.
  2. Mailath, G.J. & Samuelson, L. & Swinkels, J., 1991. "extensive Form Reasoning in Normal Form Games," Papers 9130, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  3. Brams, Steven J. & Jones, Christopher B., 1997. "Catch-22 and King-of-the-Mountain Games : Cycling, Frustration, and Power," Working Papers 97-23, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
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