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Game theory applications in wireless networks: A survey

Game theory applications in wireless networks: A survey

Bard Benmamar, Francine Kreif, LLT Laboratory, University of Tlemcen, Algeria

LaBRI Laboratory, Bordeaux, University, Talence, Frace

Game theory, deals with the interaction between agents with conflicting interests.  Game theory was originally developed to examine problems in the field of economics.  More recently, game theory has been applied to wireless networks. This later application is extremey relevant to the topics of both networking and gaming theory that we are currently studying in class.  Game theory provides significant tools to analyze network users’ behaviors and actions.  This article examines the literature on game theory as applied to wireless networks.  The article is organized as follows:

  1. First a brief overview on the history of game theory, classifications of game theory, and important definitions
  2. Identification of five areas of where game theory is applied to wireless networks
  3. Lastly, a discussion of the limitations of the application of game theory in wireless networks

The overview of game theory section of the article discusses, the history of game theory, including its appearance in the bible, the Talmud and works of Descartes and Darwin.  The section goes on to describe the classification of game theory, for both cooperative and non-cooperative games. There is also guidance on sequential versus simultaneous games, games with perfect and imperfect information, games with complete and incomplete information and zero sum games.  Important terms are also introduced in this section.  These include, Nash Equilibrium, Pareto Efficiency and Pure, Mixed and Fully-mixed game strategies. Finally this section discusses a variety of game theory models.

The second section of the article discusses game theory in wireless networks.  Of particular interest is the section on Game theory and resource allocation.  The article indicates that various interactions in wireless ad hoc networks can be modeled as a game. The section also discusses Game theory and cognitive radio networks and communications networks.

Lastly, the article presents a perspective that there are limitations on game theory’s application to wireless networks.  In particular, the author’s note that since game theory focuses on solving the Nash equilibrium, it does not consider how players should interact to reach this equilibrium.


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