Essays in applied game theory
Title: Essays in applied game theory
Author: KIRYSHEVA, Irina
Citation: Florence : European University Institute, 2015
Series/Number: EUI PhD theses; Department of Economics
My thesis covers different aspects of applied game theory. The first paper looks at a two-sided asymmetric information game where agents make a collaborative decision not knowing each others' types. In the model, an intermediary has full knowledge about the types of agents and can make a decision that brings information to some types. However, once he puts the information on the table the agents are not obliged to pay him, which undermines his incentive to participate in the first place. I find that, nevertheless, the intermediary is still welfare-improving. In my second chapter I search for the optimal prize schemes in contests with sabotage. In the presence of sabotage, a standard prize scheme where all of the prize is given to the winner is no longer optimal as it creates very high incentives for sabotage. I show that in that case, an optimal prize structure may also assume a positive reward for contestants that are behind. With a higher number of contestants sabotage becomes a public good and therefore it is a lesser concern for the designer. In that case, when sabotage is expensive, the designer can achieve the first best by giving the whole sum to the winner. When I extend the problem to the continuous case the solution crucially depends on the cost of sabotage. When sabotage is expensive, the principal wants to give all of the prize to the winner, while when it is cheap he does not want to make a contest at all, and distributes all prizes equally. In the third paper we analyze to what extent knowing game theory alters a persons' behavior. Our experiment showed a huge difference in results before and after the course. However results suggest that players behave less cooperatively not because of the knowledge of game theory per se, but due to changed expectations. We have also found that a course on game theory increases the level of reasoning.
LC Subject Heading: Game theory; Economics -- Mathematical models
Defence date: 23 March 2015; Examining Board: Professor Fernando Vega-Redondo, Supervisor, Bocconi University; Professor Piero Gottardi, EUI; Professor Paolo Pin, Università degli Studi di Siena; Professor Giovanni Ponti, Universidad de Alicante.
Type of Access: openAccess