Games of Two Halves: Non- Experimental Evidence on Cooperation, Defection and the Prisoner's Dilemma

Review of Economic Analysis 10 (2018), 285-312

28 Pages Posted: 6 Jun 2019

See all articles by Stephen Dobson

Stephen Dobson

University of Otago - School of Business - Department of Economics

John Goddard

Bangor Business School

Date Written: October 1, 2018

Abstract

We develop a stylized two-period game-theoretic model of the strategic choices made by soccer teams when selecting between defensive and attacking team formations, and between non-violent and violent styles of play. Cooperative behavior during the early stages of matches is typically superseded by non-cooperation during the latter stages. The propensity for violent play to take place in the latter stages of soccer matches is interpreted as novel non-experimental evidence that players typically resort to mutually detrimental non-cooperative forms of behavior when the playoffs assume a prisoner’s dilemma structure.

Keywords: Game theory, Prisoner’s Dilemma, Hazard functions

JEL Classification: C41, C70, L83

Suggested Citation

Dobson, Stephen Mark and Goddard, John, Games of Two Halves: Non- Experimental Evidence on Cooperation, Defection and the Prisoner's Dilemma (October 1, 2018). Review of Economic Analysis 10 (2018), 285-312 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3387405

Stephen Mark Dobson (Contact Author)

University of Otago - School of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

PO Box 56
Dunedin
New Zealand
+64 3 479 5296 (Phone)

John Goddard

Bangor Business School ( email )

Bangor Business School
College Road
Gwynedd LL57 2DG, Wales LL57 2DG
United Kingdom

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