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We model a family of peer-reviewing processes as game-theoretic problems. The model helps to understand elements of existing peer-reviewing procedures, and to predict the impact of new mechanisms. The peer-reviewing for evaluation of scientific results submitted to conferences involves complex decision processes of independent participants. Significant tax-payer money is spent by governments for the advancement of science, and such governmental decisions are often based on outcomes of peer-reviewing in scientific conferences. Here we propose to analyze and design improved mechanisms for conference peer-reviewing, based on game-theoretic approaches. Real world conference peer-reviewing processes are overly complex and here we define and analyze a simplified (toy) version, called the Peer-Reviewing Game. While our toy version may have significant assumptions, it provides an interesting game and a first step towards formalizing and understanding the real world problem. The players of this game are the researchers that participate as authors and reviewers. A funding agency tries to maximize the social value by providing rewards to researchers based on their publications. In this work the conference chair is assumed to be a trusted party, enforcing policies agreed by the funding agency and making publication decisions based on the recommendation of the reviewers. We uncover relations between Peer-Reviewing games and Prisoner's Dilemma games. Examples of mechanisms are described and analyzed both theoretically and experimentally.

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