Indian’s Dilemma – Part 1

I have always wondered why India always misses the right note. Why we never played it right after 50 years. I cannot criticize by telling how other countries did far better in shorter periods. Because my Indian critics always opposes any such statement by telling me that India is much different from every country. In this post, I have some thoughts which can possibly explain what went wrong using a non-relative approach. I used my feeble human intellect, incomplete knowledge of game theory and some stolen thoughts from Amrtya Sen to organize my beliefs.

Some Game Theory before I continue ( from wikipedia )

  • Game theory is a branch of applied mathematics that studies strategic situations where players choose different actions in an attempt to maximize their returns.
  • Given a set of alternative allocations and a set of individuals, a movement from one alternative allocation to another that can make at least one individual better off, without making any other individual worse off is called a Pareto improvement or Pareto optimization. An allocation of resources is Pareto efficient or Pareto optimal when no further Pareto improvements can be made.
  • Nash equilibrium (named after John Nash who proposed it) is a kind of optimal collective strategy in a game involving two or more players, where no player has anything to gain by changing only his or her own strategy. If each player has chosen a strategy and no player can benefit by changing his or her strategy while the other players keep theirs unchanged, then the current set of strategy choices and the corresponding payoffs constitute a Nash equilibrium.

Classical Prisoner’s Dilemma ( from wikipedia )

The classical prisoner’s dilemma (PD) is as follows:

Two suspects, A and B, are arrested by the police. The police have insufficient evidence for a conviction, and having separated both prisoners, visit each of them and offer the same deal: if one testifies for the prosecution (turns Queen’s Evidence) against the other and the other remains silent, the silent accomplice receives the full 10-year sentence and the betrayer goes free. If both stay silent, the police can only give both prisoners 6 months for a minor charge. If both betray each other, they receive a 2-year sentence each. Each prisoner must make a choice – to betray the other, or to remain silent. However, neither prisoner knows for sure what choice the other prisoner will make. What will happen?

(to be continued…)


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