Repeated Games and Reputations: Long-Run Relationships


George J. Mailath and Larry Samuelson
© 2006 Oxford University Press
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Personalized and continuing relationships play a central role in any society. Economists have built upon the theories of repeated games and reputations to make important advances in understanding such relationships. Repeated Games and Reputations begins with a careful development of the fundamental concepts in these theories, including the notions of a repeated game, strategy, and equilibrium. Mailath and Samuelson then present the classic folk theorem and reputation results for games of perfect and imperfect public monitoring, with the benefit of the modern analytical tools of decomposability and self-generation. They also present more recent developments, including results beyond folk theorems and recent work in games of private monitoring and alternative approaches to reputations. Repeated Games and Reputations synthesizes and unifies the vast body of work in this area, bringing the reader to the research frontier. Detailed arguments and proofs are given throughout, interwoven with examples, discussions of how the theory is to be used in the study of relationships, and economic applications. The book will be useful to those doing basic research in the theory of repeated games and reputations as well as those these tools in more applied research.

Reviewed by Wojciech Olszewski, Games and Economic Behavior, 59 (2007), 408-410 and Damien S Eldridge, Economic Record, 84 (2008), 128-138.



Modeling Strategic Behavior: A Graduate Introduction to Game Theory and Mechanism Design

This book is based on my lecture notes for Economics 703, a first-year graduate course that I have been teaching at the Economics Department, University of Pennsylvania, for many years.  It is impossible to understand modern economics without knowledge of the basic tools of game theory and mechanism design. My goal in the course (and this book) is to teach the necessary concepts and principles of game theory and mechanism design so that students can understand and appreciate the corpus of modern economic thought, and so contribute to it.

A key theme in the course is the interplay between the formal development of the tools and their use in applications.  At the same time, extensions of the results that are beyond the course, but important for context are (briefly) discussed.