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How the lack of resources for hurricane Harvey relief can be resolved using game theory

Article: http://www.salon.com/2017/08/31/response-to-natural-disasters-like-harvey-could-be-helped-with-game-theory_partner/

 

  1. This article discussed how the tragedy of natural disasters such as hurricane Harvey lead to levels of destruction that require a substantial amount of people affected by it to receive some form of aid or assistance from NGOs. The author of this article brings up how as is right now many NGOs are dealing with problems like competition with other NGOs for fundraising and donations which is an issue because it delays the full extent to which people in need can receive aid. I thought this was interesting because I never realized that there existed problems with charities in terms of being able to get funding since I always assumed people’s donations through food drives and clothing drives always seemed substantial. But I then learned how ineffective it is to donate food/clothing since many of the material donations are unusable so resources and time are wasted by NGOs trying to sort out the donations that can be used. So when I learned that money was the most efficient way to contribute I realized how urgent of a problem it was that NGOs have to compete for money donations. But this author proposes that game theory can be used as a solution to the issue.
  2. So the way the author describes how game theory can be used to solve the current inefficient of relief organizations is essentially discussing the concept of Nash equilibrium. The author proposes that the best thing would be for all the NGOs to work together for the best possible outcome which relates to how we discussed best strategy when two figures are faced with a dilemma and must choose the dominant strategy. In this case the author argues that working together is the dominant strategy by looking at the models he and his team constructed which displayed that under certain circumstances the Nash equilibrium of working together would pool in the most resources overall.

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