Forecasting Decisions in Conflict Situations: A Comparison of Game Theory, Role-Playing, and Unaided Judgment
24 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2008
Date Written: July 13, 2008
Can game theory aid in forecasting the decision making of parties in a conflict? A review of the literature revealed diverse opinions but no empirical evidence on this question. When put to the test, game theorists' predictions were more accurate than those from unaided judgment but not as accurate as role-play forecasts. Twenty-one game theorists made 99 forecasts of decisions for six conflict situations. The same situations were described to 290 research participants, who made 207 forecasts using unaided judgment, and to 933 participants, who made 158 forecasts in active role-playing. Averaged across the six situations, 37 percent of the game theorists' forecasts, 28 percent of the unaided-judgment forecasts, and 64 percent of the role-play forecasts were correct.
Keywords: Conflict, Expert opinion, Forecasting, Game theory, Judgement, Role-playing, Simulation
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