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ERIC Number: ED103303
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-Apr-2
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
The Uses of Game Theory in Social Science Education: A Humanistic Perspective.
Ferguson, Patrick
This paper introduces a note of caution about oversubscribing to rational game theory models of analysis at the expense of humanistic inquiry. Although game theory provides a useful tool for the explanation of rational alternatives in given social situations, it should not replace humanistic inquiry. "Good" decision-making in game theory usually focuses on the use of cost-benefit models of rationality to maximize the players best interest, regardless of whether it is morally correct to act in that way. However, the most significant questions are not those concerned with finding the best means to an end, but of reconciling and deciding among the ends or goals themselves. Another problem concerns the assignment of numerical costs to the payoffs. The fact remains that prior numerical measurements cannot be assigned with finality to human behavior. Students may fail to realize that game theory concerns itself with means and not ends, and that real social problems are much more complex and comprehensive. Since game theory models fail to consider the social implications of decision making, an effort must be made to examine social decisions from a humanistic perspective. It is more important for the student to knowthat his decision is a function of his conviction rather than expediency. (Author/DE)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented to the Alabama Academy of Science (48th, April 1971)