MA301      Half Unit
Game Theory I

This information is for the 2017/18 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Paul Duetting and Prof Bernhard Von Stengel


This course is available on the BSc in Accounting and Finance, BSc in Business Mathematics and Statistics, BSc in Management, BSc in Management, BSc in Mathematics and Economics, BSc in Mathematics with Economics and BSc in Statistics with Finance. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit. This course is available with permission to General Course students.


Basic knowledge of matrices as covered in Mathematical Methods (MA100) or Quantitative Methods (MA107). Some knowledge of probability.

Course content

Concepts and methods of game theory with applications to economics. Game trees with perfect information, Nim. Backward induction. Extensive and strategic (normal) form of a game. Nash equilibrium. Commitment. Zero sum games, mixed strategies. Maxmin strategies. Nash equilibria in mixed strategies. Finding mixed-strategy equilibria for two-person games. Extensive games with information sets, behaviour strategies, perfect recall. If time permits: The Nash bargaining solution. Multistage bargaining.


20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the MT. 2 hours of lectures in the ST.

Formative coursework

Written answers to set problems will be expected on a weekly basis.

Indicative reading

Lecture notes will be provided. Further reading: K Binmore, Playing for Real: Game Theory CUP, 2007; E Mendelson, Introducing Game Theory and Its Applications, CRC 2004.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

Key facts

Department: Mathematics

Total students 2016/17: 68

Average class size 2016/17: 12

Capped 2016/17: No

Lecture capture used 2016/17: Yes (MT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

PDAM skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills