Game play: putting rationality to the test

When is it reasonable to be unreasonable?

An article in Scientific American describes The Traveler's Dilemma (similar to the prisoner's dilemma in game theory), which suggests that the logical choice is not always the best choice. The game outcomes are directly applicable to economic theory, suggesting that selfish individual choices do not always result in better collective outcomes. The article sums it up like this: "A new kind of reasoning is needed to gain a rigorous understanding of this rational choice not to be rational."

I connect the discovery to David Shaffer's notion of epistemic games, which generate knowledge from practice and play, not theory.


Wikipedia: game theory, dilemma, behavioral economics