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A Beautiful Theory

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It wasn’t A Beautiful Mind—the book or the movie—that made John Forbes Nash, Jr., famous. It was his work in game theory, a theory that models strategic interactions between people as games. Before Nash, the only games theorists could get a handle on were artificial ones with no real-world applications. Nash’s insights enabled economists to expand the use of game theory to interesting practical problems.

It wasn’t A Beautiful Mind—the book or the movie—that made John Forbes Nash, Jr., famous. It was his work in game theory, a theory that models strategic interactions between people as games. Before Nash, the only games theorists could get a handle on were artificial ones with no real-world applications. Nash’s insights enabled economists to expand the use of game theory to interesting practical problems.


Suggested citation: Nosal, Ed, and Peter Rupert, 2002. "A Beautiful Theory," Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Economic Commentary, 04.15.2002.

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