How Is Game Theory Applied in Real Life Situations?


Diego Sanchez

Game theory is a popular branch of mathematics that deals with decision-making in strategic scenarios. It has found several applications in real life situations, ranging from economics to political science and even biology. In this article, we will delve into the various ways in which game theory has been applied in different fields.


Game theory has been widely used in economics to study the behavior of markets and firms. One of the most famous examples is the Prisoner’s Dilemma game, which is often used to analyze the behavior of firms in a duopoly market.

In this game, two firms have to decide whether to collude or compete with each other. If both firms collude, they can earn higher profits than if they compete, but if one firm defects while the other colludes, the defector earns even higher profits while the other suffers losses. The game highlights how self-interest can lead to suboptimal outcomes for both parties.

Another example is the Nash Equilibrium, which is a concept that describes a situation where no player can improve their outcome by changing their strategy unilaterally. This concept has been used to analyze auctions and bargaining situations.

Political Science

Game theory has also found applications in political science, particularly in analyzing international relations and voting systems. The Prisoner’s Dilemma game can be used to analyze arms races between countries, where both sides can benefit from disarming but fear being taken advantage of if they do so unilaterally.

Voting systems have also been analyzed using game theory concepts such as Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem, which states that no voting system can guarantee all desirable properties like transitivity and independence of irrelevant alternatives.


Game theory has also been applied in biology to study evolutionary dynamics and animal behavior. One example is the Hawk-Dove game, which models two animals competing for a resource.

If both animals are hawks, they fight until one wins and gets the resource while the other suffers injuries. If one animal is a dove, it retreats and allows the other to get the resource without any injuries. The game highlights how different strategies can evolve depending on the costs and benefits associated with them.


In conclusion, game theory has several applications in real life situations, ranging from economics to political science and biology. It provides a powerful framework for analyzing strategic decision-making and predicting outcomes in different scenarios. By understanding game theory concepts like Nash Equilibrium and Prisoner’s Dilemma, we can make better decisions in our personal and professional lives.