John Quiggin gave a splendid presentation at the 25 Australasian Economic Theory workshop at ANU yesterday. His title was Can Game Theory Be Saved?Â (a joint paper with Flavio Menezes). The basic argument is succinctly put on the first page of their paper:
Experience has shown that in most situations, it is possible to tell a game-theoretic story to fit almost any possible outcome. Although this point is only occasionally acknowledged in the formal literature, it is much more widely accepted in informal discussion.
It’s not my area of specialty, so I didn’t follow all the twists and turns, but I came away thinking that the answer to the question was ‘probably not’. One of Menezes and Quiggin’s arguments was that game theorists should pay more attention to the strategy space. This seemed to get short shrift from the audience, who thought that this wouldn’t get far with the current crop of editors and referees.