Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Unit 9

Game Theory

Hawks & Doves John Maynard Smith

Competition and cooperation can be studied mathematically, an idea that first arose in the analysis of games like chess and checkers, but soon showed its relevance to economics and geopolitical strategy. This unit shows how conflict and strategies can be thought about mathematically, and in doing so, reveal important insights about human and even animal behaviors.

Unit Goals

Video Transcript


We've all heard it said that life is like a game. Most games have well defined rules, with clear benefits for winning and costs for losing. And that makes them something we can think about logically and mathematically. But what about life? Can mathematics tell us anything about the competitions and collaborations that happen every day? From the social sciences to biology, robotics and beyond, the answer is yes.



Much of mathematics, however, has its foundation in the happenings of the world around us. The field of game theory, in some sense, represents the pinnacle of this type of mathematics. It can be thought of as the mathematical study of our human interactions.


Spatial Games

Common game theory scenarios will be modeled spatially. This interactive provides an opportunity to observe outcomes and connect them quantitatively to a payoff matrix.


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