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Stackelberg reasoning in mixed-motive games: An experimental investigation.

By Andrew M. Colman and J.A. Stirk


This is the author's final draft, not the version as published in Journal of Economic Psychology\ud \ud This article was awarded the Citation of Excellence by ANBAR Electronic Intelligence.The Stackelberg heuristic is a simulation heuristic in which a player optimizes against best-reply counterstrategies, and a game is Stackelberg-soluble if the resulting Stackelberg strategies are in equilibrium. To test the hypothesis that players use this heuristic in Stackelberg-soluble games, 100 subjects played all 12 ordinally nonequivalent 2  2 games, nine of which (including Prisoner’s Dilemma and Stag Hunt) were Stackelberg-soluble and three (including Battle of the Sexes and Chicken) were non-Stackelberg-soluble. Subjects significantly preferred Stackelberg strategies in Stackelberg-soluble games, and a protocol analysis of stated reasons for choice showed that joint payoff maximization and strategic dominance were given as reasons significantly more frequently in Stackelberg-soluble than in non-Stackelberg-soluble games

Publisher: Elsevier
Year: 1998
OAI identifier:

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