of the negotiations. Things such as the names of the parties concerned should not matter for the result, whereas their preferences do matter. This approach has been very influential in game-theoretic social contract theory. Harsanyi, Rawls, Barry, and Gauthier all have used axiomatic approaches to justify their favorite version. Their verdict in the case of the gunners is the same: the rational thing to agree to is a distribution that gives each gunner an expected utility of 2. (Note that this verdict does not tell the gunners how they should realize this outcome. There are two ways in which they could secure an expected outcome of (2, 2). They could both stay and fight or they could flip a fair coin to decide who gets to stay and who is allowed to flee.) The axiomatic approach pays no attention to the structure of the process of negotiation. All it requires as input is information about the pay-offs of the parties. Whereas it is true that sometimes it does not really matter how exactly the negotiation process is structured, sometimes it is very important. For example, if it is the case that #1 can make a claim and all #2 can do is to accept or refuse, #1 does best by offering #2 an expected utility of 1.00001 and claim 2.99999 for himself. Given the rules of the negotiation process #2 will have to accept this since the alternative is (slightly) worse. On the other hand, if the rules allow for exchanges of claims and offers the situation is quite different. Therefore, if you want to predict what the result of the negotiation process between rational agents will be, it is crucial to know the rules of negotiation in detail as well as the bargaining area. In addition, it is important to know whether the parties will keep to the agreement. For if this is not the case, it is unlikely that the parties concerned will accept the agreement instead of an agreement that will turn out to be binding. Therefore, it is better to think of the bargaining process as a series of possible moves in a game that precedes the game that the gunners face. Game Theory and Ethics 10 Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy This is the second approach, which regards bargaining processes as non- cooperative games . The solution to such a game then corresponds to the solution of the bargaining process. On this approach, one needs to pay a lot of attention to detail. Consequently the analysis is complicated and often messy. (This is another reason why the axiomatic approach is so attractive to some.) However, it is very well possible that the solution to the game and the solution based on the axiomatic approach are identical. In fact, this is what you would expect if the proposed axiomatic solution is at all plausible. This intuition is the driving force of the so-called Nash program (Nash 1950). This program aims at evaluating axiomatic solutions by checking whether the outcome of a negotiation game leads to the same outcome.
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