MIT Course Number
As Taught In
We will apply insights from game theory to explain human social behavior, focusing on novel applications which have heretofore been the realm of psychologists and philosophers—for example, why people speak indirectly, in what sense beauty is socially constructed, and where our moral intuitions come from—and eschewing traditional economic applications such as industrial organization or auctions.
We will employ standard games such as the prisoners dilemma, coordination, hawk-dove, and costly signaling, and use standard game theory tools such as Nash Equilibria, Subgame Perfection, and Perfect Bayesian Equilibria. These tools will be taught from scratch and no existing knowledge of game theory, economics, or mathematics is required. At the same time, students familiar with these games and tools will not find the course redundant because of the focus on non-orthodox applications.