Peter Duersch

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We show that a symmetric two-player zero-sum game has a pure strategy equilibrium if and only if it is not a generalized rock-paper-scissors matrix. Moreover, we show that every finite symmetric quasiconcave two-player zero-sum game has a pure equilibrium. Further sufficient conditions for existence are provided. We point out that the class of symmetric(More)
Two rationality arguments are used to justify the link between conditional and unconditional preferences in decision theory: dynamic consistency and consequentialism. Dynamic consistency requires that ex ante contingent choices are respected by updated preferences. Consequentialism states that only those outcomes which are still possible can matter for(More)
We show that for many classes of symmetric two-player games, the simple decision rule " imitate-the-best " can hardly be beaten by any other decision rule. We provide necessary and sufficient conditions for imitation to be unbeatable and show that it can only be beaten by much in games that are of the rock-scissors-paper variety. cannot be beaten by much(More)
We use an experiment to explore how subjects learn to play against computers which are programmed to follow one of a number of standard learning algorithms. The learning theories are (unbeknown to subjects) a best response process, fictitious play, imitation, reinforcement learning, and a trial & error process. We test whether subjects try to influence(More)
We characterize the class of symmetric two-player games in which tit-for-tat cannot be beaten even by very sophisticated opponents in a repeated game. It turns out to be the class of exact potential games. More generally, there is a class of simple imitation rules that includes tit-for-tat but also imitate-the-best and imitate-if-better. Every decision rule(More)
The question whether a minimum rate of sick pay should be mandated is much debated. We study the effects of this kind of intervention in an experimental labor market that is rich enough to allow for moral hazard, adverse selection, and crowding out of good intentions to occur. We find that higher sick pay is reciprocated by workers through higher effort but(More)
While most of the previous literature interprets trust as an action, we adopt a view that trust is represented by a belief that the other party will return a fair share. The agent's action is then a commitment device that signals this belief. In this paper we propose and test a conjecture that economic agents use trust strategically. That is, the agents(More)
It is well known that the rock-paper-scissors game has no pure saddle point. We show that this holds more generally: A symmetric two-player zero-sum game has a pure saddle point if and only if it is not a generalized rock-paper-scissors game. Moreover, we show that every finite symmetric quasiconcave two-player zero-sum game has a pure saddle point. Further(More)
Ambiguity preferences are important to explain human decision-making in many areas in economics and finance. To measure individual ambiguity preferences , the experimental economics literature advocates using incentivized laboratory experiments. Yet, laboratory experiments are costly and require a lot of time and administrative effort. This study develops(More)