GOV 385R • Applied Game Theory
12:30 PM-3:30 PM
Course Overview: This course reviews concepts from the introduction to game theory course, but focuses primarily on recent and contemporary applications of game theory in the fields of American politics, Comparative politics, and International Relations. The course will cover topics including, but not limited to, repeated games, bargaining games, games of incomplete and asymmetric information (signaling, cheap talk), and games with continuous choice and diverse information structures. These modeling approaches have been applied to understand such diverse topics as bargaining in legislatures, the development of committees and rules in legislatures, candidate entry in races, judicial activism, the evolution of democracy and party competition, ethnic violence, interstate crisis bargaining, the functions of international organizations, and the nature of bargaining during wars. Readings will consist of articles supplemented with the textbook. Problem sets will be particularly important, and working together on problem sets is highly encouraged. The only way to learn game theory is by doing and through trial and error. There will be two exams worth 25% each, problem sets will be worth 40%, and quality of classroom preparation and participation will be worth 10%.
Nolan McCarty and Adam Meirowitz. 2007. Political Game Theory: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press. Jeff Gill. 2005. Essential Mathematics for Political and Social Research. Cambridge University Press.