John Nash, the Princeton University mathematician and Nobel laureate whose towering intellect and descent into paranoid schizophrenia formed the basis of the Academy Award-winning movie A Beautiful Mind,” has died. He was 86.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the 1994 Nobel Prize in economics to Nash, John Harsanyi of the University of California-Berkeley and Reinhard Selten of the University of Bonn in Germany for their work in game theory, which seeks to understand how people, governments and companies cooperate and compete.
Nash was honoured for his early insights, still widely used in economics, into how rivals shift or maintain strategies and allegiances. The Nash Equilibrium describes the moment when all parties are pursuing their best-case scenario and wouldn’t change course even if a rival does. It has been widely applied to matters including military face-offs, industrial price wars and labour negotiations.
Sources: The Hindu, BS.