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Plausible Cooperation,Third Version

  • Olivier Compte


    (Paris School of Economics, Paris)

  • Andrew Postlewaite


    (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania)

There is a large repeated games literature illustrating how future interactions provide incentives for cooperation. Much of the earlier literature assumes public monitoring: players always observe precisely the same thing. Departures from public monitoring to private monitoring that incorporate differences in players’ observations may dramatically complicate coordination and the provision of incentives, with the consequence that equilibria with private monitoring often seem unrealistically complex. We set out a model in which players accomplish cooperation in an intuitively plausible fashion. Players process information via a mental system — a set of psychological states and a transition function between states depending on observations. Players restrict attention to a relatively small set of simple strategies, and consequently, might learn which perform well.

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Paper provided by Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania in its series PIER Working Paper Archive with number 13-008.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: 01 Dec 2010
Date of revision: 01 Dec 2012
Handle: RePEc:pen:papers:13-008
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  1. Ben-Porath, E., 1991. "Repeated games with Finite Automata," Papers 7-91, Tel Aviv - the Sackler Institute of Economic Studies.
  2. Jonathan Bendor & Roderick M. Kramer & Suzanne Stout, 1991. "When in Doubt..," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 35(4), pages 691-719, December.
  3. Compte, Olivier, 2002. "On Sustaining Cooperation without Public Observations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 102(1), pages 106-150, January.
  4. George J. Mailath & Stephen Morris, 1999. "Repeated Games with Almost-Public Monitoring," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1236, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  5. Miller, John H., 1996. "The coevolution of automata in the repeated Prisoner's Dilemma," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 87-112, January.
  6. Michi Kandori, 2010. "Social Norms and Community Enforcement," Levine's Working Paper Archive 630, David K. Levine.
  7. Sekiguchi, Tadashi, 1997. "Efficiency in Repeated Prisoner's Dilemma with Private Monitoring," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 345-361, October.
  8. Bagwell, Kyle, 1995. "Commitment and observability in games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 271-280.
  9. 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.
  10. Sainty, Barbara, 1999. "Achieving greater cooperation in a noisy prisoner's dilemma: an experimental investigation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 421-435, July.
  11. Gilboa, Itzhak, 1988. "The complexity of computing best-response automata in repeated games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 342-352, August.
  12. Kandori, Michihiro & Mailath, George J & Rob, Rafael, 1993. "Learning, Mutation, and Long Run Equilibria in Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(1), pages 29-56, January.
  13. Michihiro Kandori & Hitoshi Matsushima, 1998. "Private Observation, Communication and Collusion," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(3), pages 627-652, May.
  14. Piccione, Michele, 2002. "The Repeated Prisoner's Dilemma with Imperfect Private Monitoring," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 102(1), pages 70-83, January.
  15. Christopher Phelan & Andrzej Skrzypacz, 2007. "Private Monitoring with Infinite Histories," NajEcon Working Paper Reviews 843644000000000079,
  16. Abreu, Dilip & Rubinstein, Ariel, 1988. "The Structure of Nash Equilibrium in Repeated Games with Finite Automata," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(6), pages 1259-81, November.
  17. Piccione, Michele & Rubinstein, Ariel, 1997. "On the Interpretation of Decision Problems with Imperfect Recall," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 3-24, July.
  18. Abreu, Dilip, 1986. "Extremal equilibria of oligopolistic supergames," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 191-225, June.
  19. Olivier Compte, 1998. "Communication in Repeated Games with Imperfect Private Monitoring," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(3), pages 597-626, May.
  20. Michihiro Kandori & Ichiro Obara, 2007. "Finite State Equilibria in Dynamic Games," 2007 Meeting Papers 253, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  21. Olivier Compte & Andrew Postlewaite, 2008. "Repeated Relationships with Limits on Information Processing," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000002307, David K. Levine.
  22. Ehud Kalai & William Stanford, 1986. "Finite Rationality and Interpersonal Complexity in Repeated Games," Discussion Papers 679, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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