What is it about?

We analyzed the individual differences in the way people play tacit coordination games in two different cultural groups: Chinese and Israelis. We could see that the two cultural groups behaved differently. Specifically, the Chinese appeared to be better coordinators than the Israelis. Moreover, they could be clustered to two typical strategic behavior, while the Israelis were clustered to four typical behaviors. These differences might stem from the fact that the Chinese are a collectivist society whereas the Israelis are a more individualistic one. Finally, we also utilize this insight to construct a simple prediction model that predicts the coordination ability of an individual.

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Why is it important?

Our findings show that cultural background has a profound affect on the way people play tacit coordination games. These insights can be utilized in the context of human-agent interaction where an automated agent should consider the cultural background of its human counterpart when reasoning about which actions to take.

Perspectives

It was very interesting to see the differences in tacit coordination abilities between the two cultural groups. I really hope to run the same experiment on a new cultural group and see the differences and strengthen the main insight that on the individualistic-collectivist spectrum is correlated with tacit coordination abilities.

Inon Zuckerman
Ariel University

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This page is a summary of: Collectivism-individualism: Strategic behavior in tacit coordination games, PLoS ONE, February 2020, PLOS, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0226929.
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