Axiomatic Equilibrium Selection for Generic Two-Player Games

60 Pages Posted: 12 Jun 2009 Last revised: 27 May 2011

See all articles by Srihari Govindan

Srihari Govindan

University of Rochester

Robert Wilson

Stanford Graduate School of Business

Date Written: May 24, 2011


We impose three conditions on refinements of the Nash equilibria of finite games with perfect recall that select closed connected subsets, called solutions. A. Each equilibrium in a solution uses undominated strategies; B. Each solution contains a quasi-perfect equilibrium; C. The solutions of a game map to the solutions of an embedded game, where a game is embedded if each player’s feasible strategies and payoffs are preserved by a multilinear map. We prove for games with two players and generic payoffs that these conditions characterize each solution as an essential component of equilibria in undominated strategies, and thus a stable set as defined by Mertens (1989).

Suggested Citation

Govindan, Srihari and Wilson, Robert B., Axiomatic Equilibrium Selection for Generic Two-Player Games (May 24, 2011). Stanford University Graduate School of Business Research Paper No. 2021(R), Available at SSRN: or

Srihari Govindan (Contact Author)

University of Rochester ( email )

Department of Economics
Rochester, NY NY 14627
United States
5852757214 (Phone)

Robert B. Wilson

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States
650-723-8620 (Phone)
650-725-7979 (Fax)

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