Information and Beliefs in a Repeated Normal-Form Game
49 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2010
Date Written: March 12, 2010
We study beliefs and choices in a repeated normal-form game. In addition to a baseline treatment with common knowledge of the game structure, feedback about choices in the previous period and random matching, we run treatments (i) with fixed matching, (ii) without information about the opponent’s payoffs, and (iii) without feedback about previous play. Using Stahl and Wilson’s (1995) model of limited strategic reasoning, we classify behavior with regard to its strategic sophistication and consider its development over time. In the treatments with feedback and full information about the game, we observe more strategic play, more best-responses to beliefs and more accurate beliefs over time. While feedback is the main driving force of learning to play strategically and for forming beliefs that accurately predict the behavior of the opponent, both incomplete information about the opponent’s payoffs or lack of feedback lead to a stagnation of best-response rates over time.
Keywords: Experiments, Beliefs, Strategic Uncertainty, Learning
JEL Classification: C72, C92, D84
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