Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Recitations: 1 session / week, 1 hour / session

Course Overview

This course is a rigorous investigation of the evolutionary and epistemic foundations of solution concepts, such as rationalizability and Nash equilibrium. It covers classical topics, such as repeated games, bargaining, and supermodular games as well as new topics such as global games, heterogeneous priors, psychological games, and games without expected utility maximization. Applications are provided when available.

Textbooks and Readings

In addition to the textbooks listed below, there will be readings from various journals to supplement the texts.

Primary Texts

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Fudenberg, Drew, and Jean Tirole. Game Theory. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1991. ISBN: 9780262061414.

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Osborne, Martin, and Ariel Rubinstein. A Course in Game Theory. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1994. ISBN: 9780262650403.

Supplementary Texts

Buy at Amazon Mailath, George J., and Larry Samuelson. Repeated Games and Reputations. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2006. ISBN: 9780195300796.

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Weibull, Jorgen. Evolutionary Game Theory. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1997. ISBN: 9780262731218.

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Fudenberg, Drew, and David Levine. The Theory of Learning in Games. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1998. ISBN: 9780262061940.


Problem sets 40%
Take-home final exam 60%

There will be 5 problem sets due throughout the semester, as well as a take-home exam during the final exam week. Students have 24 hours to complete and return the exam.


1 Review of basic concepts  
2 Application: Bargaining with complete information  
3 Extensive-form games with imperfect information  
4 Signaling and forward induction Problem set 1 due
5 Application: Signaling in bargaining  
6 Repeated games and their applications  
7 Reputation formation  
8 Application: Screening and reputation in bargaining  
9 Rationalizability and correlated equilibrium Problem set 2 due
10 Supermodular games and their applications  
11 Global games and their applications Problem set 3 due
12 Review Problem set 4 due
13 Learning and evolutionary foundations Problem set 5 due
14 Review