Ulric B. and Evelyn L. Bray Social Sciences Seminar
Abstract: We use a novel experimental design to identify subjects' strategies in an infinitely repeated prisoners' dilemma experiment with perfect monitoring. We ask subjects to design strategies that will play in their place, that is, we elicit strategies. We find that three simple strategies represent the majority of the chosen strategies: Always Defect, Tit-For-Tat, and Grim. We use the elicited strategies to test our ability to recover strategies using statistical methods based on observed cooperate-defect choices and find that we can do so fairly well under certain conditions. Overall, our results show that it is possible to learn about the strategies used by the subjects to support cooperation from their round by round cooperation decisions.
Click here to read the full paper, written with Guillaume Fréchette.