Working Paper No. 577

Uniqueness in Infinitely Repeated Decision Problems

Published: April 16, 2002Pages: 15Keywords: Game Theory, Time Preference; Hyperbolic Discounting; Repeated Decision ProblemsJEL-codes: C61; C72; C73; D90

Uniqueness in Infinitely Repeated Decision Problems Nicolas Vieille and Jörgen W. Weibull


Dynamic decision-making without commitment is usually modelled as a game between the current and future selves of the decision maker. It has been observed that if the time-horizon is infinite, then such games may have multiple subgame-perfect equilibrium solutions. We provide a sufficient condition for uniqueness in a class of such games, namely infinitely repeated decision problems with discounting. The condition is two-fold: the range of possible utility levels in the decision problem should be bounded from below, and the discount factor between successive periods should be non-decreasing over time, a condition met by exponential, quasi-exponential and hyperbolic discounting.

Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State

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This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

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