Economics 201

Game Theory

Spring 2005


Michael Robinson

Skinner 128


Office Hours:  M 11-12,  M-W 3-4 and by appointment



            TThis course provides an introduction to game theory.  We will cover a variety of different types of games (simultaneous, sequential) and games played under different circumstances (for example uncertainty, asymmetric information, with and without signaling).  The course will not be particularly mathematical, but we will compute mathematical solutions for many of the games.


The text for this course is:


            Games of Strategy 2nd Edition.  Dixit and Skeath. Available at the Odyssey and online various places.


Requirements and Grades:


            You grade will be based on two mid-semester exams (60%). There will also be weekly quizzes (10%).  You will be required to write one paper that uses game theory to analyze a problem of interest to you (20%). During the 4th hours which are Monday’s at  4:00 we will be playing games. By participating in these 4th hours you will collect points for the final 10% of your grade.


            Some of the fourth hour games will come from        which also has interesting information on game theory.

            Game login page


               Games for 2-14 

            Game 1 Centipede xmdr1178

            Game 2  Trust and Pass    xmhc1178






                                                  Course Outline and Readings

                                                    Chapters in hardcover text


                  Topic                                                                 Approximate Dates

1.         Introduction to Game Theory                                        Jan. 26-31.

                  Chapters 1-2                                                         

2.         Sequential Games                                                         Feb. 2-4

                  Chapter 3


Concepts and Techniques

3.         Simultaneous Game Pure Strategies                               Feb.7-9

                  Chapter 4

4.         Simultaneous Game Pure Strategies                               Feb. 11-14

                  Chapter 5

5.         Combing Sequential and Simultaneous Moves               Feb. 16-18

                  Chapters 6

6.         Mixed Strategies                                                           Feb. 21-23

                  Chapter 7

7.         More Mixed Strategies                                                 February 25-28

                  Chapters 8                                                            

8.         Mid-semester Exam                                                      March 4


Broad Class of Games

9.         Uncertainty and Information                                          March 7-11

                  Chapter 9

10.       Strategic Moves                                                           March 21-23

                  Chapter 10

11.       Repeated Games                                                          March 25-28

                  Chapter 11

12.       Collective Action                                                          March 30-April 1

                  Chapters 12

13.       Evolutionary Games                                                      April 4-6

                   Chapter 13


14.       Second Exam                                                               April 8


Applications (These may be adjusted)

15.       Cuban Missile Crisis                                                     April 11-13

             Chapter 14

16.       Voting                                                                          April 15-18

             Chapter 15

17.       Auctions                                                                       April 20-22

             Chapter 16

18.       Bargaining                                                                    April 25

             Chapter 17

19.       Student Applications                                                     April 27-May 2


20.       Final Paper Due                                                            May 12 (11th for Seniors)



Fourth Hour Schedule

January 31

February 7

February 14

February 21

February 28

March 7

February 14

February 21

February 28