Course syllabus

Course
UGEB2530B
Title
Games and Strategic Thinking
Units
3
Lecturer
Dr. Liu Chun Lung Kelvin
Office : Rm 202A, LSB
Office number : 3943 7969
Email : clliu@math.cuhk.edu.hk
Teaching assistant
Dr. Lo Chiu Hong
Office: LSB 228, LSB
Office number : 3943 7955
Email : chlo@math.cuhk.edu.hk
Language
Cantonese and English
Course Description
The aim of this course is to study games and strategies from the mathematical perspective. We investigate the manner in which rational people interact when there are competitions. This applies to parlour games and more importantly to economy, social psychology, politics and business. We will introduce the great discoveries of Von Neumann and Nash, and discuss their impact on society. Also, we will use examples of various types of games to illustrate how some basic mathematical methods can lead to optimal strategies for decision making.
Textbook
Lecture Notes
P. D. Straffin, Game Theory and Strategy, Mathematical Association of America.
Major Topics
Sequential games
Impartial games
Matrices and probabilities
2-person zero-sum games
Nash equilibrium
2-person non-zero-sum games
Pareto optimal
Prudential strategy, security level
Prisoner’s dilemma
N-person non-cooperative games
N-person cooperative games
Shapley value
Additional Topics
If time permits, we will also cover some of the following topics:
Instant Insanity
Partizan Games
Surreal numbers
Regret matrices
Stable marriage problem
Repeated plays
Evolutionary stable strategy
Drafting
Reading
Reference books are:
Assessment
Homeworks 15%
In-class exercises/games 10%
Midterm 30%
Final 45%
Examinations
There will be one midterm exam and one final exam given during the lecture time; please see calendar for the dates of the exams. Detailed arrangement will be announced later.
Honesty in Academic Work
The Chinese University of Hong Kong places very high importance on honesty in academic work submitted by students, and adopts a policy of zero tolerance on cheating and plagiarism. Any related offence will lead to disciplinary action including termination of studies at the University.
Although cases of cheating or plagiarism are rare at the University, everyone should make himself/herself familiar with the content of the following website:
http://www.cuhk.edu.hk/policy/academichonesty/
and thereby help avoid any practice that would not be acceptable.
Grade descriptors
A: Demonstrates well integrated knowledge and a deep understanding of the basics of game theory; able to completely solve unfamiliar and nonstandard problems, provide innovative approaches to challenging ones, and apply knowledge and skills to new and unfamiliar real life problems with strong and convincing explanations.
A-: Demonstrates good knowledge and a strong understanding of the basics of game theory, provide highly accurate solutions to unfamiliar and nonstandard problems and apply knowledge and skills to new and unfamiliar real life problems with good explanations.
B: Demonstrates essential knowledge and a good understanding of the basics of game theory, provide solutions to unfamiliar but standard problems, and apply knowledge and skills to standard real life problems with adequate explanations.
C: Demonstrates satisfactory knowledge and an understanding, perhaps with gaps, of the basics of game theory, able to solve slight variations of routine problems and apply knowledge and skills to standard real life problems.
D: Demonstrates disconnected knowledge and only a limited understanding of the basics of game theory, shows sketchy argument with barely rigorous logic and apply knowledge and skills to simple and standard real life problems.
F: Unable to demonstrate sufficient knowledge and understanding of the basics of game theory, unable to solve the simplest type of problems and show little ability to apply knowledge to simple real life problems.