This Special Topics course is an introduction to rational decision and game theory. Its aim is to improve skills that are required to correctly analyze and evaluate complex situations that may involve some degree of uncertainty in a way that enables one to draw inferences and make decisions in a rationally acceptable way. Such complex situations may involve only one individual's beliefs, preferences, and situation, which is the object of decision theory. Game theory addresses cases involving multiple individuals. We will examine some of the best known methods from both a mathematical and a philosophical point of view. Thus, we will become acquainted with the basic mathematical methods used to characterize central concepts of decision and game theory such as probability, utility, preference, expectation, rationality, strategy, bargaining, and evolutionarily viable behaviour. In addition, we will critically assess these formal methods as they find application in various fields, including philosophy, microeconomics, psychology, politics, and biology. However, the course will presume no background in any of these disciplines.

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