Students Staff

27 August 2015

Yanis Varoufakis tells former Essex tutor Game Theory was “never relevant”.

Ex-Greek Finance Minister and Essex Alumus, Yanis Varoufakis, has responded to a question from his former Essex tutor, Roy Bailey, in which he asks whether events in Greece over the last year had caused him to adjust how he thinks about Game Theory.

Roy Bailey, an honorary senior lecturer in the Department of Economics at Essex, was one of nine academics who were invited to put their questions to Mr Varoufakis for an article for The Conversation, a website that takes news analysis and commentary from academics across the world.

In response to Mr Bailey’s question Mr Varoufakis said, “I shall have to disappoint you Roy. As I wrote in a New York Times op-ed, Game Theory was never relevant. It applies to interactions where motives are exogenous and the point is to work out the optimal bluffing strategies and credible threats, given available information. Our task was different: it was to persuade the “other” side to change their motivation vis-à-vis Greece.”

Yanis Varoufakis was at the University of Essex in the 1980s, during which time he studied for a BA in Mathematical Economics and a PhD in Economics.


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