Y2K Bibliography of Experimental Economics and Social Science
Evolution in Games

Charles A. Holt, cah2k@virginia.edu, suggestions and corrections welcome
(for online and personal use only)


Anderson, Simon P., Jacob K. Goeree, and Charles A. Holt (1997) “Stochastic Game Theory: Adjustment and Equilibrium with Bounded Rationality,” University of Virginia, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, evolution, logit equilibrium, potential games, quantal response. Abstract: This paper specifies an evolutionary model in which agents adjust their decisions in the direction of higher expected payoff, subject to random error (Brownian motion). The process produces a probability distribution of players' decisions that evolves over time according to the Fokker-Planck equation. The evolutionary process is stable for all potential games, and the steady state is a logit equilibrium, so the analysis provides a dynamic justification for the use of this one-parameter generalization of a Nash equilibrium. The evolutionary paths and steady state are sensitive to payoff differences that do not affect the Nash equilibrium, so the stochastic game theory approach can be used to explain intuitive results of laboratory experiments that are "anomalous" when viewed from the perfect rationality perspective of a Nash equilibrium. Email Contact: sa9w@virginia.edu

Anderson, Simon P., Jacob K. Goeree, and Charles A. Holt (2000) “Minimum Effort Coordination Games: An Equilibrium Analysis of Bounded Rationality,” Games and Economic Behavior, forthcoming. Keywords: experiments, game theory, logit equilibrium, coordination, learning, potential games, stochastic potential, evolution, quantal response. Abstract: This paper considers minimum-effort coordination games with a continuum of Pareto-ranked Nash equilibria. The introduction of noise yields a unique probability distribution of effort decisions that maximizes a stochastic potential function (expected value of the potential of the game plus entrophy). As the noise vanishes, the limiting distribution converges to an outcome that is analogous to the risk-dominant outcome in two-by-two games. In accordance with experimental evidence and economic intuition, the theory predicts that effort distributions decrease with increases in effort cost and the number of players, even though these parameters do not affect the set of Nash equilibria. Email Contact: sa9w@virginia.edu

Andreoni, James, and John H. Miller (1995) “Auctions with Artificial Adaptive Agents,” Games and Economic Behavior, 1039-51. Keywords: experiments, auctions, evolution, simulation. Email Contact: andreoni@facstaff.wisc.edu

Axelrod, Robert (1970) Conflict of Interest, Chicago: Markham. Keywords: experiments, game theory, prisoner's dilemma, cooperation, evolution.

Axelrod, Robert (1984) The Evolution of Cooperation, New York: Basic Books. Keywords: experiments, game theory, prisoner's dilemma, cooperation, evolution.

Axelrod, Robert (1986) “An Evolutionary Approach to Norms,” American Political Science Review, 80:4 (December), 1095-1111. Keywords: experiments, game theory, prisoner's dilemma, cooperation, tit-for-tat strategies.

Becker, Gary S. (1976) “Altruism, Egoism, and Genetic Fitness: Economics and Sociobiology,” Journal of Economic Literature, 14:3 (September), 817-826. Keywords: altruism, evolution.

Berninghaus, Siegfried, Karl-Martin Ehrhart, and Claudia Keser (1999) “The Invisible Hand: Experiments on Strategy Selection in Population Games,” Karlsruhe University, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, incomplete information, population game, evolution. Abstract: In an experimental evolutionary game, subjects spend more time near the socially efficient state if it is an equilibrium and if there is incomplete payoff information. Email Contact: sbe@vwl3.wiwi.uni-karlsruhe.de

Blume, Andreas, Douglas DeJong, Y.-G. Kim, and G. Sprinkle (1998) “Experimental Evidence on the Evolution of Meaning of Messages in Sender-Receiver Games,” American Economic Review, 88:5 (December), 1323-1340. Keywords: experiments, game theory, information, signaling games, learning.

Cheung, Yin-Wong, and Daniel Friedman (1998) “A Comparison of Learning and Replicator Dynamics Using Experimental Data,” Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 35:3 (April), 263-280. Keywords: experiments, game theory, learning, evolution, replicator dynamics. Email Contact: dan@cats.ucsc.edu

Crawford, Vincent P. (1991) “An `Evolutionary` Interpretation of Van Huyck, Battalio, and Beil's Experimental Results on Coordination,” Games and Economic Behavior, 3:1 (February), 25-59. Keywords: experiments, game theory, coordination games, evolution, learning. Abstract: This paper explains behavior patterns in coordination game experiments with an econometric model of adaptive best responses to the previous outcome. Email Contact: vcrawfor@ucsd.edu

Crawford, Vincent P. (1997) “Learning Dynamics, Lock-In, and Equilibrium Selection in Experimental Coordination Games,” University of California at San Diego, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, coordination games, evolution, learning, equilibrium selection. Email Contact: vcrawfor@ucsd.edu

Dawes, Robyn M. (1991) “Social Dilemmas, Economic Self-Interest, and Evolutionary Theory,” in Recent Research in Psychology: Frontiers in Mathematical Psychology: Essays in Honor of Clyde Coombs, edited by R. D. Brown and J. E. K. Smith, New York: Springer-Verlag, . Keywords: experiments, game theory, social dilemmas, evolution. Email

Dufwenberg, Martin, and Uri Gneezy (1999) “Information Feedback in Price Competition,” Stockholm University, presented at the Fall 1999 European Regional ESA Meetings, Keywords: experiments, markets, duopoly, Bertrand competition, random matching, repetition, strangers versus partners, information, rationality, evolution, learning. Abstract: This paper reports results of homogeneous product duopoly pricing experiments. Prices are higher with repeated play than with random matching. Providing information about previous unsuccessful high prices facilitates some tacit collusion in the random matching protocol, which is much less prevalent when such information is not provided. Email Contact: md@ne.su.se

Eckel, Catherine C., and Rick K. Wilson (1999) “Why Reciprocity? Facial Expressions, Evolutionary Psychology, and the Emergence of Reciprocal Behavior in Simple Bargaining Games,” Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Spring 1999 Public Choice Meetings. Keywords: experiments, bargaining, facial expressions, evolutionary psychology. Email Contact: eckelc@vt.edu

Friedman, Daniel (1996) “Equilibrium in Evolutionary Games: Some Experimental Results,” Economic Journal, 106:434 (January), 1-25. Keywords: experiments, game theory, evolution. Email Contact: dan@cats.ucsc.edu

Friedman, Daniel, and Joel Yellin (1997) “Evolving Landscapes for Population Games,” University of California at Santa Cruz, Discussion Paper. Keywords: experiments, game theory, population games, evolution. Email Contact: dan@cats.ucsc.edu

Goeree, Jacob K., and Charles A. Holt (1999) “Stochastic Game Theory: For Playing Games, Not Just for Doing Theory,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 96(September), 10564-10567. Keywords: experiments, game theory, Nash equilibrium, logit equilibrium, quantal response equilibrium, introspection, coordination, traveler's dilemma, evolution, learning. Abstract: This paper argues that noisy models of introspection, learning, and equilibrium can explain the salient behavior patterns in game experiments, patterns that are not predicted by the Nash equilibrium or its refinements. Models of iterated noisy introspection are used to explain initial choices, models of noisy learning and evolution are used to predict dynamic adjustment paths, and logit equilibrium models explain Nash-invariant treatment effects in steady-state distributions of decisions. Email Contact: jg2n@virginia.edu

Hoffman, Elizabeth, Kevin A. McCabe, and Vernon L. Smith (1998) “Behavioral Foundations of Reciprocity: Experimental Economics and Evolutionary Psychology,” Economic Inquiry, 36:3 (July), 335-352. Keywords: experiments, game theory, sequential games, reciprocity, psychology. Email Contact: ehoffman@uic.edu

Holt, Charles A., and Susan K. Laury (1998) “Theoretical Explanations of Treatment Effects in Voluntary Contributions Experiments,” in Handbook of Experimental Economics Results, edited by C. R. Plott and V. L. Smith, New York: Elsevier Press, forthcoming. Keywords: experiments, public, voluntary contributions, survey, altruism, error, evolution. Abstract This is a survey of the theoretical explanations for the treatments that have been shown to affect voluntary contributions in the laboratory. Email Contact: slaury@gsu.edu, holt@virginia.edu

Kim, Y. G. (1996) “Evolutionary Analysis of Tacit Communication in Van Huyck, Battalio, and Beil's Game Experiments,” Games and Economic Behavior, 16:2 (October), 218-237. Keywords: experiments, game theory, coordination game, tacit collusion, evolution.

King, Ronald R., Vernon L. Smith, Arlington W. Williams, and Mark Van Boening (1993) “The Robustness of Bubbles and Crashes in Experimental Stock Markets,” in Nonlinear Dynamics and Evolutionary Economics, edited by R.* Dall and P. Chen, Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press, 183-200. Keywords: experiments, markets, asset markets, speculative bubbles. Email Contact: vanboen@bus.olemiss.edu

Kirchkamp, Oliver (1999) “Simultaneous Evolution of Learning Rules and Strategies,” Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 40:3 295-312. Keywords: experiments, game theory, learning. Email Contact: oliver@kirchkamp.de

Kirchsteiger, Georg, Muriel Niederl, and Jan Potters (1998) “An Experimental Study on the Endogenous Evolution of Market Institutions,” Tilburg University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1998 ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, markets, institutions, endogenous institutions. Abstract: Elements of the market trading institution are made endogenous by having traders decide on price quotes and on the subset of other traders who will recieve the bid or offer. Subjects typically inform all traders on the other side of the market, but none of the traders on their own side. Although the resulting information setting is less open than in a double auction, the efficiency is as high as in a double auction. Email Contact: j.j.m. potters@kub.nl

Knapp, Robert, and Andreas Ortmann (1998) “On the Use of Evolutionary Models in Experimental Economics,” Bowdoin College, Keywords: experiments, game theory, evolution, replicator dynamics, learning, matrix game. Abstract: Data from a bargaining experiment in matrix form are used to evaluate a variety of evolutionary models. There is no clear winner.

Kurzban, Robert (1998) “Evolution Solves the Public Goods Problem: Cognitive Economics,” University of Arizona, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1998 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, public, voluntary contributions,
evolution, psychology. Email Contact: rkurzban@econlab.arizona.edu

Mailath, George J. (1998) “Do People Play Nash Equilibrium? Lessons from Evolutionary Game Theory,” Journal of Economic Literature, 36:3 (September), 1347-1374. Keywords: experiments, game theory, bounded rationality, Nash equilibrium, evolutionary game theory.

Miller, John H., and James Andreoni (1991) “Can Evolutionary Dynamics Explain Free Riding in Experiments?,” Economic Letters, 36:1 (May), 9-15. Keywords: experiments, public, voluntary contributions, evolution, free riding, replicator dynamic, evolution. Email Contact: miller@zia.hss.cmu.edu

Oeschssler, J. (1997) “An Evolutionary Interpretation of Mixed-Strategy Equilibria,” Games and Economic Behavior, 21:1-2 (October-November), 203-237. Keywords: experiments, game theory, mixed strategy equilibria, evolution. Email Contact: oechsler@wiwi.hu-berlin.de

Proulx, Christopher (1998) “The Evolution of Lost Opportunities in Bargaining,” University of California at Santa Cruz, Discussion Paper, presented at the Fall 1998 ESA Meeting. Keywords: experiments, bargaining. Email Contact: rabbit@econ.ucsb.edu

Schotter, Andrew (1999) “Coordination Conventions in Inter-Generation Games: An Experiment in Lamarckian Evolutionary Dynamics,” New York University, Discussion Paper, presented at the Summer 1999 ESA Meetings. Keywords: experiments, game theory, socialization, inter-generational matchings, benevolence, social conventions, history, macroeconomics. Email Contact: schotter@fasecon.econ.nyu.edu

Selten, Reinhard, ed. (1991) Game Equilibrium Models I. Evolution and Game Dynamics, New York; Berlin; London and Tokyo: Springer. Keywords: experiments, game theory, evolution. Email Contact: selten@lab.econ1.uni-bonn.de

Selten, Reinhard (1991) “Evolution, Learning, and Economic Behavior,” Games and Economic Behavior, 3:1 (February), 3-24. Keywords: experiments, games, learning, evolution. Email Contact: selten@lab.econ1.uni-bonn.de

Stahl, Dale (1993) “Evolution of Smart Players,” Games and Economic Behavior, 5:4 (October), 604-617. Keywords: experiments, game theory, evolution. Email Contact: stahl@eco.utexas.edu

Sugden, Robert (1986) The Economics of Rights, Co-operation and Welfare, Oxford and New York: Blackwell. Keywords: experiments, decisions, evolution. Email Contact: r.sugden@uea.ac.uk

Van Huyck, John B., J. P. Cook, and Raymond C. Battalio (1994) “Selection Dynamics, Asymptotic Stability, and Adaptive Behavior,” Journal of Political Economy, 102:5 (October), 975-1005. Keywords: experiments, game theory, dynamics, adaptive behavior, evolution. Email Contact: john.vanhuyck@tamu.edu