Ethics and Game Theory [Abstract]

Ethics & International Affairs, Volume 3 (1989)

Game Theory has been an essential tool in analyzing national security, international trade, and the global environment since Neumann and Morgenstern introduced it more than 45 years ago. Chamberlin examines the work of these two authors, focusing on the relationship between rationality and morality as it arises in strategic interactions among players in a game based on three essential features: rational behavior, consequentialism, and the self-interest of players. The author concludes that due to the egoistic nature of actors, political dilemmas cannot easily be solved through the use of Game Theory. Nonetheless, he insists on its validity in contributing to our thinking about the place of ethics in international affairs and in clarifying both the dangers and potential areas of cooperation inherent in many international relationships.

 

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