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Communication, Timing, and Common Learning

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  • Jakub Steiner
  • Colin Stewart

Abstract

We study the effect of stochastically delayed communication on common knowledge acquisition (common learning). If messages do not report dispatch times, communication prevents common learning under general conditions even if common knowledge is acquired without communication. If messages report dispatch times, communication can destroy common learning under more restrictive conditions. The failure of common learning in the two cases is based on different infection arguments. Communication can destroy common learning even if it ends in finite time, or if agents communicate all of their information. We also identify conditions under which common learning is preserved in the presence of communication.

Suggested Citation

  • Jakub Steiner & Colin Stewart, 2010. "Communication, Timing, and Common Learning," Working Papers tecipa-389, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tor:tecipa:tecipa-389
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin W. Cripps & Jeffrey C. Ely & George J. Mailath & Larry Samuelson, 2008. "Common Learning," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(4), pages 909-933, July.
    2. Parikh, Rohit & Krasucki, Paul, 1990. "Communication, consensus, and knowledge," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 178-189, October.
    3. Morris Stephen E, 2002. "Faulty Communication: Some Variations on the Electronic Mail Game," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 1-26, January.
    4. Geanakoplos, John D. & Polemarchakis, Heraklis M., 1982. "We can't disagree forever," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 192-200, October.
    5. Heifetz, Aviad, 1996. "Comment on Consensus without Common Knowledge," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 273-277, July.
    6. Monderer, Dov & Samet, Dov, 1989. "Approximating common knowledge with common beliefs," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 170-190, June.
    7. Koessler, Frederic, 2001. "Common knowledge and consensus with noisy communication," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 139-159, September.
    8. Binmore, Ken & Samuelson, Larry, 2001. "Coordinated Action in the Electronic Mail Game," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 35(1-2), pages 6-30, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Grafenhofer, Dominik & Kuhle, Wolfgang, 2016. "Observing each other’s observations in a Bayesian coordination game," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 10-17.
    2. Antonio Jiménez-Martínez, 2015. "A model of belief influence in large social networks," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 59(1), pages 21-59, May.
    3. Morris, Stephen, 2014. "Coordination, timing and common knowledge," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(4), pages 306-314.
    4. Rodrigues-Neto, José Alvaro, 2012. "The cycles approach," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 207-211.
    5. Antonio Jiménez-Martínez, 2012. "Consensus in Communication Networks under Bayesian Updating," Working papers DTE 529, CIDE, División de Economía.
    6. Martin Cripps & Jeffrey Ely & George Mailath & Larry Samuelson, 2013. "Common learning with intertemporal dependence," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 42(1), pages 55-98, February.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Common knowledge; communication; learning;

    JEL classification:

    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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