COOL CLASSES: “Theory of Non-Cooperative Games”

This course on Game Theory examines mathematical models of how rational actors engage in collaboration and conflict, and connects these topics to applications in business, economics, law, politics, and biology.

Class name: Theory of Non-Cooperative Games

Taught by: Visisting Assistant Professor of Economics Matthew Incantalupo


Here’s what Incantalupo had to say about his class:

My class is an upper-level course on Game Theory. Game Theory involves mathematical models of strategic interaction. In Game Theory, we assume that all decision makers are rational—that they’ll choose what’s best for them given the constraints they’re facing, while taking into account the choices of others—and examine what sorts of strategies they’d undertake as rational actors. This allows us to theorize in a very precise way and generate hypotheses about the real world. I hope that students don’t look at this as just a math class in which we’ll solve a bunch of models. We’re trying to understand strategic interaction and learn more about how rational actors behave across disciplines like economics, politics, and even biology. I’d be happy if all of my students are able to write down and solve models, but I’d be thrilled if, by the end of our course, they can really talk about Game Theory and explain it to others who haven’t experienced it.

I want to teach this class because I want to grow students’ toolkits. Game Theory provides a set of tools for understanding the world, and it’s a hard set of tools to acquire on your own. Learning Game Theory requires some mentorship, and I’m hoping to provide that. I’d like for my students to learn some Game Theory and then decide whether they want to incorporate it into future work, such as their thesis projects.


See what other courses the Economics Department is offering this semester.

Photo of Incantalupo in class by Rae Yuan ’19.

Cool Classes is a series that highlights interesting, unusual, and unique courses that enrich the Haverford experience.