The concepts of game theory (rationality etc) now pervade much of social science, so that Professor Zagare's exposition of game theory and its applications (intended to “convert the unconverted and initiate the uninitiated”) is very welcome. He provides methods for analysing the structure of the game; considers zero and nonzero-sum games and the fundamental ‘minimax theorem’; and investigates games with more than two players, including the possibility of coalitions between players. Diverse examples give the reader an idea of how the theory can be applied to a wide range of situations.

Nonzero-Sum Games: The Rest of the Continuum


In Chapter 2, games of total conflict—that is, zero-sum games—were examined. In zero-sum games the interests of the players are diametrically opposed to one another. What one player wins, the other loses, and vice versa.

Conflict, however, need not be total; indeed, it rarely is. In most social, ...

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