nep-spo New Economics Papers
on Sports and Economics
Issue of 2022‒11‒14
two papers chosen by
Humberto Barreto
DePauw University

  1. AI-powered tiebreak mechanisms: An application to chess By Nejat Anbarci; Mehmet S. Ismail
  2. The Predictive Power of Luck: Luck and Risk-Taking in a Repeated Risky Investment Game By Holden, Stein T.; Tione, Sarah; Katengeza, Samson; Tilahun, Mesfin

  1. By: Nejat Anbarci; Mehmet S. Ismail
    Abstract: In this paper, we propose that AI systems serve as a judge in the event of a draw in games such as chess and in the event of a tie in tournaments. More specifically, we introduce a family of AI-based scoring mechanisms and the concept of "tiebreak strategyproofness" in $n$-person zero-sum games. A mechanism is called tiebreak strategyproof (TSP) if it is always in the best interest of every player to choose the "best" action according to a given AI system. As such, we introduce a practicable scoring mechanism in chess and show that it is TSP, i.e., it is never in the interest of a player to deliberately play a worse move to increase their advantage in case the game goes to the tiebreak. In other words, TSP mechanisms are immune to such strategic manipulations. We also show that the current "speed-chess" tiebreaks are not TSP or immune to manipulation with an example from 2018 world chess championship between Carlsen and Caruana.
    Date: 2022–10
  2. By: Holden, Stein T. (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences); Tione, Sarah (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences); Katengeza, Samson (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences); Tilahun, Mesfin (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences)
    Abstract: Can luck predict risk-taking behavior in games of chance? Economists have not widely studied this issue although overconfidence, optimism-, and pessimism bias have received substantial attention in recent years. In this study, we investigate how good and bad luck outcomes in a simple repeated risky investment game affect risk-taking behavior in the following rounds of the same game where the outcome (luck) in the game is determined by the throwing of a die after each round. The outcome of the previous round's die-throw is known when the subjects decide how risky their next choice in the game will be. A sample of 718 university students is used as subjects in the game in a recursive within-subject design. The results demonstrate a strong impact of luck on risk-taking behavior that lasts not only to the next round but also into another two follow-up rounds, with cumulative effects. A time delay of 1-2 months between Round 1 and Round 2 did not wipe out the luck effect and it was only slightly weaker than the luck effect from Round 2 to Rounds 3 and 4 that followed immediately after Round 2. Many recent studies have shown that risk preferences respond to recent shocks. This study indicates that random shocks such as luck in previous games (states of nature) influence risk-taking behavior. Our study suggests that the causal mechanism goes through subjective beliefs in luck based on past experiences that influence expectations and thereby risk-taking behavior.
    Keywords: Risky investment game; Luck; Illusion of control; Repeated game; Predictive power.
    JEL: D80 H51
    Date: 2022–10–29

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