European Meetings on Game Theory

SING CONFERENCES

About SING

Since 1999 game theorists worldwide are organized in the Game Theory Society, which holds a World Congress every four years to promote the investigation, teaching, and application of game theory. The next meeting will be in 2020 in Budapest. Furthermore, there are two other worldwide important conferences on game theory, which take place on annual basis: The Stony Brook International Conference on Game Theory in the United States of America and the European Meeting on Game Theory (SING), being the most import conference in Europe.

The history of the SING conferences dates back to 1983 with the first 13 meetings being held in Italy. Since 2001, when Spanish scholars got involved in the organization, the conferences take place on regular annual base. The acronym SING was introduced in 2005 when scholars from the Netherlands joined. Today the conference series is called the ”European Meeting on Game Theory” after in 2014 scholars from Poland got involved in the organization of a SING meeting for the second time. However, it was decided to keep also the acronym SING. Hence, SING14 in 2018 is the 14th European Meeting on Game Theory since the acronym SING got introduced and the 27th meeting since the first meeting in Italy. It will be the first time ever that ”The European Meeting on Game Theory” will take place in Germany.

As usual for the SlNG conference also the SING14 conference programme will consist of small number invited lectures by highly distinguished scholars in the field and a larger number of contributed papers, which are selected among all applications by a scientific committee of established researchers in the field to ensure a high scientific standard of the papers presented at the conference (see below). However, also contributions from Ph.D. students and researchers being at the beginning of their career are explicitly invited and a Best Paper Prize is awarded. Even SING is the European Meeting on Game Theory, participants from all over the world attend the conference on a regular basis. The language of the meeting is English.

The organizers welcome contributions from all areas of game theory, including, but not limited to:

  • Cooperative games and their applications
  • Mechanism design
  • Networks
  • Dynamic games
  • Evolutionary games
  • Stochastic games
  • Voting and power indices
  • Auctions
  • Bargaining
  • Learning and experimentation in games
  • Computational game theory

Game Theory

Game theory is the term given to the methodology of using mathematical tools to model and analyze situations where decision-making is interactive, usually called ”strategic”. Hence, it is concerned with the choice of decision-makers, usually called ”players”, with different goals, where the decisions of each decision-maker may have an impact on the outcome for all decision-makers. This interactive nature distinguishes game theory from classical decision theory where a single decision-maker has to make a choice facing a ”passive” environment. Game theory aims to clarify the structure of interactive decision-making situations, to predict the behavior of decision-makers and to give advice to decision-makers in such situations. Since the fact that game theory is a theory that can be characterized as a context-free mathematical toolbox, it can be applied in any situation of interactive decision-making.

The foundations of modern game theory go back to the book ”The Theory of Games and Economic Behavior”, published in 1944 by the mathematician John von Neumann and the economist Oskar Morgenstern. Since then the theory has been developed extensively. Today has applications in a wide range of fields such as economic theory, network theory, political science, military, law, computer science, biology, sociology, anthropology, psychology, and philosophy.

From a methodological point of view game theory is inherently tied to mathematics as the game theory makes use of a variety of mathematical tools. The analysis of some game-theoretic models even required the development of new mathematical tools.

The field of game theory can be divided into three board sub-fields: non-cooperative game theory, dealing with so-called strategic games, which assume the non-existence of binding agreements, cooperative game theory dealing with so-called bargaining games, which allow for binding agreements, and evolutionary game theory. The non-cooperative game theory is basically concerned with decision-makers acting independently from each other and with each decision-maker trying to achieve its most desirable outcome. This also holds for cooperative game theory, but with the already mentioned difference that it is assumed that decision-makers can sign binding agreements, i.e., agreement, which are enforceable. However, in many cases, interactive decision-making problems requires a modeling, which makes use of both sub-fields of game theory. Finally, evolutionary game theory, which is a newer sub-flied of game theory, which has its origins in biology. It deals with the development of populations. It defines a framework of contests, strategies, and analytics into which Darwinian competition can be modeled. The evolutionary game theory differs from the other two sub-fields, known as ”classical game theory”, in focusing more on the dynamics of strategy change. However, it also found its way to other applications such as the development of technical norms and standards.

Today, game theory as an important tool in many fields is widely recognized. Since 1994 eleven game-theorists won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences: John Forbes Nash Jr., John Harsanyi, Reinhard Selten, William Vickrey, Robert Aumann, Thomas Schelling Alvin Roth, Lloyd S. Shapley, Eric S. Maskin, Roger B. Myerson, and Jean Tirole. Moreover, John Maynard Smith was awarded the Crafoord Prize for his application of game theory to biology. In the past, some of these have attended the SING meetings.

About SING History

The history of SING dates back to 1983 with the first 13 meetings held in Italy. Then, subsequently, from 2001 onwards meetings were held in Spain, the Netherlands, Poland, France, Hungary, Russia, and Denmark. After the forthcoming first meeting in Germany in 2018, in 2019 first meeting will be hosted in Finland.

The establishment of the tradition of an annual conference goes back to the year 2000. In this year Federico Valenciano organized in Bilbao GAMES 2000, the first World Congress of the Game Theory Society. During this conference, Fioravante Patrone, director of the Italian CITG, took the initiative of looking for a ”joint venture” between Italy and Spain, suggesting the alternation of Italian and Spanish conferences as before the game theory conferences just to place in Italy on an irregular base. The agreement on this idea by the involved researchers leads to the conferences of Ischia (2001), Sevilla (2002), Urbino (2003) and Elche (2004).

During the conference of Urbino the idea of The Netherlands as a ”new entry” into the Italian-Spanish alternation, proposed by Fioravante Patrone, was eagerly approved. The first edition of SING (Spanish-Italian-Netherlands Game Theory Meeting) was organized by Hans Peters in Maastricht in 2005. Andrea di Liddo organized the second edition, SING2, in Foggia in 2006 and Juan Tejada SING3 in Madrid in 2007. It was then agreed that other European countries wishing to enter the rota had to participate first as guest organizers and only after the second participation in this role could they then actually join SING.

In 2008 the conference was organized outside one of the three SING countries for the first time: Jacek Mercik organized SING4 in Wroclaw. In 2009 SING5 was held in Amsterdam, organized by René van den Brink. In 2010 SING6 took place in Palermo organized by Dario Bauso. The following two years the conference was hosted again by countries outside the SING member countries: in 2011 Michel Grabisch organized SING7 in Paris; in 2012 László Á. Kóczy organized SING8 in Budapest. SING9 was organized respectively in Vigo in 2013 by Gustavo Bergantiños.

In 2014 Poland was the guest organizer for the second time. SING 10 took place in Kraków, organized by Izabella Stach. Hence, Poland became an actual member of SING. In 2014, a decision has been made not to change the acronym, in view of the fact that it has become well-known, but to transform the name of the meetings from 2015 to ”SING – European Meeting on Game Theory”. In 2015, the SING11 Meeting took place in St. Petersburg, organized by Leon Petrosyan. The 2015 edition also involved the 9th annual International Conference on Game Theory and Management (GTM2015). In 2016 SING moved for the first time to Denmark: SING12 was organized in Odense by Peter Sudhölter. In 2017 SING returned to France: at Paris Dauphine Stefano Moretti organized SING13 and France became a SING member. In 2018 SING took place in Germany: SING14 was organized in Bayreuth by Frank Steffen.

In 2019, for the first time, SING will take place in Finland. SING15 will be organized by Hannu Salonen in Turku.

Year Name Location Organiser
2001 Italy/Spain 1 Ischia Jacqueline Morgan
2002 Italy/Spain 2 Sevilla Jesús Mario Bilbao, Francisco Fernández
2003 Italy/Spain 3 Urbino Gian Italo Bischi
2004 Italy/Spain 4 Elche Joaquín Sánchez Soriano
2005 SING 1 Maastricht Hans Peters
2006 SING 2 Foggia Andrea Di Liddo
2007 SING 3 Madrid Juan Tejada
2008 SING 4 Wrocław Jacek Mercik
2009 SING 5 Amsterdam René van den Brink
2010 SING 6 Palermo Dario Bauso
2011 SING 7 Paris Michel Grabish
2012 SING 8 Budapest László Kóczy
2013 SING 9 Vigo Gustavo Bergantiños
2014 SING 10 Kraków Izabella Stach
2015 SING 11 St. Petersburg Leon Petrosyan
2016 SING 12 Odense Peter Sudhölter
2017 SING 13 Paris Stefano Moretti
2018 SING 14 Bayreuth Frank Steffen
2019 SING 15 Turku Hannu Salonen