TitleOf Social Norms and Sanctioning: A Game Theoretical Overview
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsVillatoro D, Sen S, Sabater-Mir J.
JournalInternational Journal of Agent Technologies and Systems (IJATS)
Date Published01/2010
PublisherIGI Global

Social norms is a term that has been widely used in different areas of research like sociology, philosophy or multiagent systems. However there is still not a clear definition of what social norms are and the types of problems that they solve. This work presents a general classification and distinction of norms. The type of norms treated in this work are those norms created through the interaction of agents and that are not imposed by any central authority. We identify different types of norms and definitions, from a game theoretical point of view. The main differentiation is made between convetional norms and essential norms: the former ones are norms created to establish a convention in a situation where several solutions are equally feasible, but it is needed for the society to decide one, e.g., driving on one side of the road; the later norms solve problems of collective action. Finally, we analyze several aspects of sanctioning mechanisms and how these mechanisms affect in the emergence of norms.