Social Context in Potential Games

  • Martin Hoefer
  • Alexander Skopalik
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7695)


A prevalent assumption in game theory is that all players act in a purely selfish manner, but this assumption has been repeatedly questioned by economists and social scientists. In this paper, we study a model that allows to incorporate the social context of players into their decision making. We consider the impact of other-regarding preferences in potential games, one of the most popular and central classes of games in algorithmic game theory. Our results concern the existence of pure Nash equilibria and potential functions in games with social context. The main finding is a tight characterization of the class of potential games that admit exact potential functions for any social context. In addition, we prove complexity results on deciding existence of pure Nash equilibria in numerous popular classes of potential games, such as different classes of load balancing, congestion, cost and market sharing games.


Delay Function Congestion Game Strategic Game Potential Game Personal Cost 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Hoefer
    • 1
  • Alexander Skopalik
    • 2
  1. 1.Dept. of Computer ScienceRWTH Aachen UniversityGermany
  2. 2.Dept. of Computer ScienceTU DortmundGermany

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