Favorites and underdogs: Strategic behavior in an experimental contest
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Conflicts between favorites and underdogs are everyday phenomena. We examine their strategic behavior in an experimental contest, and find behavior partially consistent with predictions. Favorites given a first-mover advantage do overcommit effort relative to Nash. Underdogs often select the best response effort level given the favorite's move. Overall dissipation of the prize was significantly higher with the strategic commitment relative to Nash.
qu]Life is not so mathematically idiotic that it allows only the big to eat the small, for it happens just as often that the bee kills the lion, or at least drives it mad.
August Strindberg — Author's preface to Frukan Julia (1888)
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