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Group Play in Games and the Role of Consent in Network Formation

  • Matthew Jackson
  • Gary Charness

We study games played between groups of players, where a given group decides which strategy it will play through a vote by its members. When groups consist of two voting players, our games can also be interpreted as network-formation games. In experiments on Stag Hunt games, we find that that the structure of the voting rule completely determines which equilibrium is played, independently of the payoff structure. This contrasts with the play of games between individuals, where payoffs play an important role in equilibrium selection. We also explore play between groups where one member of each group dictates the play of that group. We find that the dictator tends to play a less risky strategy when choosing for a group than when playing only for him or herself. We develop a new solution concept, robust-belief equilibrium, which explains the data that we observe. We provide results showing that this solution concept has application beyond the particular games in our experiments.

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings with number 654.

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Date of creation: 11 Aug 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:nasm04:654
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  4. Matthew O. Jackson, 2003. "A survey of models of network formation: Stability and efficiency," Working Papers 1161, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
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  19. Cason, Timothy N & Mui, Vai-Lam, 1997. "A Laboratory Study of Group Polarisation in the Team Dictator Game," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(444), pages 1465-83, September.
  20. Martin G. Kocher & Matthias Sutter, 2004. "The Decision Maker Matters: Individual versus Group Behaviour in Experimental Beauty-Contest Games," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2004-09, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
  21. Jackson, Matthew O., 1998. "The Evolution of Social and Economic Networks," Working Papers 1044, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  22. Venkatesh Bala & Sanjeev Goyal, 2000. "A Noncooperative Model of Network Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1181-1230, September.
  23. Bhaskar Dutta & Sayantan Ghosal & Debraj Ray, 2004. "Farsighted Network Formation," Working papers 122, Centre for Development Economics, Delhi School of Economics.
  24. Gary Bornstein & Uri Gneezy & Rosemarie Nagel, 1999. "The effect of intergroup competition on group coordination: An experimental study," Economics Working Papers 393, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  25. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  26. Alan S. Blinder & John Morgan, 2000. "Are Two Heads Better Than One?: An Experimental Analysis of Group vs. Individual Decisionmaking," NBER Working Papers 7909, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Chwe Michael Suk-Young, 1994. "Farsighted Coalitional Stability," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 299-325, August.
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