The dynamics of decision processes

The Dynamics of Decision Processes, © 2012-2015, Gerald H Thomas, is a series of white papers to Geometry, Language and Strategy, Thomas, 2006, World Scientific (New York), which I  refer to as Vol. 1. The white papers have been expanded and form the basis of Vol. 2, published in World Scientific, 2016. Volume 2 details how game theory can be thought of as a DC phenomenon and then extended to a special case of AC behaviors, namely those associated with resonant or harmonic effects where only discrete frequencies appear. These AC behaviors include all steady-state behaviors as well as to possible transient behaviors. Such additional behaviors arise from initial and boundary conditions that act like external forces. Volume 2 is an engineering textbook that applies decision process theory to decision processes. AC type solutions have proved fruitful in electrical engineering and, we hope, will open the possibility for a new discipline of decision engineering.

These white papers consists of 13 chapters, including a summary at the end of each chapter with exercises to solidify understanding and extend the concepts presented. To access a chapter, click on the chapter entries below. New concepts and distinctions are indicated in the text as bold italics. A summary of these concepts and distinctions can be found in the index. The published version, Vol. 2, extends these papers to 20 chapters with significantly updated content, format and organization.

In the first part, chapters 1-4, we lay the theoretical foundations starting with the descriptive basis of game theory, which we also take as our descriptive basis.

  • Preface Forward and Introduction, including chapter 1 develops the necessary ideas from physics, differential geometry and game theory on which to create a dynamic theory of decisions.
  • chapter 2 inertial behaviors extends the ideas from the previous chapter to include applied forces that move decisions to a new position as distinguished from inertial forces that tend to leave things unchanged.
  • chapter 3 Persistent behaviors provides a consistent theory of decisions based on the ideas developed in the first two chapters. Persistency is an important element of the theory, providing a theoretical foundation to describe the agents or players as well as a mechanism for incorporating codes of conduct into the theory,
  • chapter 4 Stationary behaviors develops a complete solution of a class of models describing realistic decision processes. This chapter is technical and provides, along with appropriate exercises, sufficient grounding for further investigations of the theory.

In the second part, chapters 5-7, we inquire into the nature of the theory with the scenarios for the prisoner’s dilemma and Robinson Crusoe economics and conclude with a general review of game theory and economic approaches.

In the third part, chapters 8-12, we numerically solve games with more than one person, each of which can have one or more strategies. These solutions elucidate the engineering issues that arise when analyzing decision processes based on our deterministic perspective. This third part shows the reader how the theory can be applied in a variety of situations.

Afterword Bibliography and Index: the afterword suggests next steps.

I welcome peer review as well as all feedback. When appropriate, I will publish an updated version of this book based on that review and feedback, along with corrections for errors that are bound to creep into a project of this size.

3 thoughts on “The dynamics of decision processes

  1. Pingback: Value creation, value transfer and bonding in decision making | Decision Process Theory

  2. Pingback: Wolfram Technology Conference 2013 | Decision Process Theory

  3. Pingback: Inequality in Decision Processes | Decision Process Theory

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *