Those familiar with the film or novel A Beautiful Mind will know that Nobel Prize winner John Nash was a mathematician, but his theories found their greatest application in economics. So, who should rightfully claim Nash as their own? To find out, sixteen students from The University of Winnipeg’s Mathematics/Statistics and Economics Departments met at Across the Board Game Café to play “So Long Sucker!” in the first annual John Nash Challenge.
The game, created by Nash and his colleagues, combines economic theories in a tantalizing game of companionship and disloyalty. Based on Nash’s game theory, “So Long Sucker!” reflects the behaviour of people forming coalitions. Progress is made by forming alliances with at least one other player, but to take the crown, players must ultimately betray their partners.
Marko Milosevic, an honours student in Mathematics/Statistics, describes his feelings about winning this year’s John Nash Challenge, “I was very conflicted. It’s a hard win to accept. A team effort is what got me to the final round and it was morally challenging to play a game that inherently involves deception, especially when the opponents are some of the nicest people. There were several apologies going around afterwards.”
This year’s John Nash Challenge is the first in what is expected to be an annual event, bringing students together for friendly competition that relates to their academic studies.
“After limited in-person activity for over two years, the John Nash Competition was a great way to connect with classmates and faculty members, while applying theories I learned in class.” Said Callum Goulet-Kilgour, President of the Finance and Economics Students’ Association (FESA).
In the future, he hopes to expand the John Nash Challenge to welcome students from an array of different departments at The University of Winnipeg.
Outside the game, attendees indulged in food and lively dialogue as they watched the tournament play out in front of them.
“Being able to mingle with students and colleagues at The John Nash Challenge was really rewarding,” said Dean of Business and Economics, Hugh Grant. “The suspense watching the final round, and the betrayal that came with it made for an exciting evening,”
The Faculty of Business and Economics at The University of Winnipeg works alongside student groups like the FESA to enhance students’ experiences through organizing practical yet fascinating events, lectures and workshops. Membership in student associations is open to all University of Winnipeg students who are interested in business endeavours.