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Loss of commitment? An evolutionary analysis of Bagwell's example

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  • Oechssler, Jörg
  • Schlag, Karl H.

Abstract

In a recent paper Bagwell (1995) pointed out that only the Cournot outcome, but not the Stackelberg outcome, can be supported by a pure Nash equilibrium when actions of the Stackelberg leader are observed with the slightest error. The Stackelberg outcome, however, remains close to the outcome of a mixed equilibrium. We compare the predictions in various classes of evolutionary and learning processes in this game. Only the continuous best response dynamic uniquely selects the Stackelberg outcome under noise. All other dynamics analyzed allow for the Cournot equilibrium to be selected. In typical cases Cournot is the unique long run outcome even for vanishing noise in the signal.

Suggested Citation

  • Oechssler, Jörg & Schlag, Karl H., 1997. "Loss of commitment? An evolutionary analysis of Bagwell's example," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1997,39, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:sfb373:199739
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Morgan, John & Vardy, Felix, 2007. "The value of commitment in contests and tournaments when observation is costly," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 326-338, August.
    2. Huck, Steffen & Muller, Wieland, 2000. "Perfect versus Imperfect Observability--An Experimental Test of Bagwell's Result," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 174-190, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    imperfectly observable commitment; evolution; imitation; learning; equilibrium selection;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games

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