Game Theory in Economics and Beyond
- (pp. 107-30)
AbstractWithin economics, game theory occupied a rather isolated niche in the 1960s and 1970s. It was pursued by people who were known specifically as game theorists and who did almost nothing but game theory, while other economists had little idea what game theory was. Game theory is now a standard tool in economics. Contributions to game theory are made by economists across the spectrum of fields and interests, and economists regularly combine work in game theory with work in other areas. Students learn the basic techniques of game theory in the first-year graduate theory core. Excitement over game theory in economics has given way to an easy familiarity. This essay first examines this transition, arguing that the initial excitement surrounding game theory has dissipated not because game theory has retreated from its initial bridgehead, but because it has extended its reach throughout economics. Next, it discusses some key challenges for game theory, including the continuing problem of dealing with multiple equilibria, the need to make game theory useful in applications, and the need to better integrate noncooperative and cooperative game theory. Finally it considers the current status and future prospects of game theory.
Citation2016. "Game Theory in Economics and Beyond." Journal of Economic Perspectives, 30 (4): 107-30. DOI: 10.1257/jep.30.4.107
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