On the Nature and Dynamics of Social Inequality

Hansen, P. G. (Lecturer)

    Activity: Talk or presentationLecture and oral contribution



    The application and use of the game theoretic approach to social conventions has become of increasingly interest throughout the legal, economic and social sciences. This tendency has in particular been fuelled by the successful development of learning theories capable of explaining how the problem of equilibrium selection, around which any theory of convention must revolve, may be solved by learning agents. As with approaches in classical game theory, these learning models ultimately proceeds on the assumption that successful strategies and choices are reinforced, whereby learning processes are linked to optimization in and equilibrium states of games. Though tempting as this may be, one should, however, be cautious in drawing inferences about the optimality or efficiency of conventions, or claiming that a state of convention will always turn out to serve the interests of all agents involved relative to a pre-conventional state. Focusing on property rights, this lecture discusses the nature and dynamics of social inequality relative to such phenomena as repression, discrimination, and normativity.

    Emneord: game theory, social conventions, social dynamics, property rights, discrimination, social norms, social inequality, Hawk-dove game, David Hume, David Lewis, Robert Sugden
    Period16 May 2007
    Event titleOn the Nature and Dynamics of Social Inequality
    Event typeConference
    LocationBifröst University, Iceland, Iceland


    • game theory
    • social conventions
    • social dynamics
    • property rights
    • discrimination
    • social norms
    • social inequality
    • Hawk-dove game
    • David Hume
    • David Lewis
    • Robert Sugden