Strategy and Politics: An Introduction to Game Theory is designed to introduce students with no background in formal theory to the application of game theory to modeling political processes. This accessible text covers the essential aspects of game theory while keeping the reader constantly in touch with why political science as a whole would benefit from considering this method. Examining the very phenomena that power political machineries—elections, legislative and committee processes, and international conflict, the book attempts to answer fundamental questions about their nature and function in a clear, accessible manner.
Included at the end of each chapter is a set of exercises designed to allow students to practice the construction and analysis of political models. Although the text assumes only an elementary-level training in algebra, students who complete a course around this text will be equipped to read nearly all of the professional literature that makes use of game theoretic analysis.
Table of Contents
1. Politics as a Game. 2. Extensive Forms, Voting Trees and Planning Ahead 3. The Strategic Form and Nash Equilibria. 4. Zero Sum and Spatial Games. 5. The Prisoners’ Dilemma and Collective Action. 6. Agendas and Voting Rules. 7. Games With Incomplete Information. 8. Cooperation and Coalitions.
Emerson M.S. Niou is Professor of Political Science at Duke University. He is the co-author of The Balance of Power (Cambridge University Press) and his current projects include studies of institutions and governance, theories of voting, and politics of alliance formation.
Peter C. Ordeshook is Professor of Political Science at California Institute of Technology. A fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, he has taught at the University of Rochester, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Texas, and the California Institute of Technology. He is the author, editor, or coauthor of a dozen books and over a hundred academic essays on formal political theory and constitutional design.
"The strength of Strategy and Politics is its amazing ability to cover the essential aspects of game theory while keeping the reader constantly in touch with why political science as a whole would benefit from considering this method." — Arthur Lupia, Hal R. Varian Collegiate Professor of Political Science, University of Michigan