Ariel Rubinstein; An Introduction to GAME THEORY for Law and Philiosophy Students, Fall 2004 Ariel Rubisntein Introduction to Game Theory for Law and Philiosophy Students

Animals, Human Beings and Games                    Arnon Lotem  & Ariel Rubinstein

Exam: Feb 13th, 2006.

Economics (berglas) room 012



Zoological Garden experiement. Pictures taen by Neta and Anat from Nature Campus

Roy Shalem's photo


Click on the photos to enlarge

From Arnin:  Following some requests, my power point presentations will be available to download from the Life Sciences classroom computer at:  Classes\zoology\Animals humans and games

Non Life Sciences students can get access to this folder from home by filling the details and following the instructions in:

In the line for "maslul limudim" please type in Hebrew: "Al hayot anashim and mischakim".  If you have problems, contact me directly at

Number 1011-4680-01
Period Fall 2005
Lecturer Arnon Lotem  (office:  3-6408381)  Ariel Rubinstein  (office: 640-9601) 
Plan We will try to understand together the way that Game Theory is applied to Animal Studies.   Some of the lectures will bein class and some will be in the Zoological Garden.
Time Tue 08:30-10:00
Room Berglas 001 and the Zoological Garden
List of Students A message I got from the computer center:  

"All students have been given university e-mail accounts. Students who are registered for the course have been added to the distribution list automatically with their university e-mail address. Please remind your students that they must activate their e-mail accounts by going to:

Students who wish to receive their mail at a different address can use automatic mail forwarding by going to the Web interface at:   or by updating their email address via the Student's Personal Information system at:   Others can join the list by sending e-mail to:   with the line:  

subscribe LIF0431-4606-01 Real Name    or   subscribe ECO1011-4680-01 Real Name"

Exams Feb 13th, 2006
Requirements ---

Plan of the course

# Date Topic Tecaher Tasks
1 1/11 Monkeys' behavior and Human behavior. Ariel Task #1: read the two papers:

Brosnan, SF & de Waal, FBM "Monkeys Reject Unequal Pay" Nature 425: 297-299

Chen, Keith Venkat Lakshminarayanan & Laurie Santos The Evolution of Our Preferences: Evidence from Capuchin-Monkey Trading Behavior

visit two sites: Bronsnan's and Chen.   Read the popular press cover and espcially listen to the NPR's interviews.

Watch also the movie at:

2 8/11   Ariel Task # 2: read the following two papers:

Kacelnik & Bateson. Risk-sensitivity: crossroads for theories of decision-making. TICS 1997

Marsh & Kacelnik. Framing effects and risky decisions in starlings. PNAS 2002

In relation to Marsh & Kacelnik's paper (and also considering the other papers), try to think about the following simple questions:

1. Are the described behaviors in the human and animals' experiments really the same?

2. Assuming they are, what is the point?

3 15/11 Evolutionary explanations of behavior Arnon Presentation

Task # 3:

In light of my lecture of this week (Nov 15) and the papers of task #2, return to the paper from

task #1: Chen et al. " The evolution of our preferences: Evidence from Capuchin-monkey Trading Behavior" and try to invent a new normative model that answers the question: Why animals and humans seem to weigh losses more than twice as heavily as gains?

In other words, try to consider a game or natural circumstances under which an animal that weigh losses twice as heavily as gains (like the Capuchins in experiments 2 & 3), do better than a "rational animal" that does not show this bias.

4 22/11 Decision making in birds Arnon  
5 29/11 An intorduction to ESS Ariel  
6 6/12 Behavioral Startegies and Ideal Free Distribution Arnon

Zoological Garden

Task #4

Read  Harper's paper "Competitive Foraging in Mallards: "Ideal Free" Ducks"

Roy Shalem's photo of the Zoological Garden experiement (click on the photo)

7 13/12 An intorduction to ESS Ariel Task #5

Read Chapter 2 in Maynard Smith  "Evolution and the Theory of Games"

8 20/12 Selction and Drift Arnon  
9 27/12 Selction and Drift Arnon  
10 3/1 Sex Ratio Arnon+Ariel John Maynahard Smith: Evolutionary Genetics Chapter 13
11 10/1 Sex Ratio Ariel


12 17/1 Signalling Ariel

Task #6

An Introduction to the Theory of Honest Signalling

13 24/1 Cooperation Ariel+Arnon Task # 7:
Read the following paper on cooperation and signaling (no need to understand all the technical details, but try to understand the logic behind each payoff matrix).

Lotem A, Fishman M.A., & Stone L. 2003 From reciprocity to unconditional altruism through signaling benefits. Proc.
Roy. Soc. Lond. B. 270, 199-205.

14 31/1 Zoological Garden Arnon Task # 8:
Before the last meeting, which will take place at the zoo (Jan 31st), read chapter 6 in Zahavi & Zahavi's Book.