When applied correctly, game theory can actually save you marriage – http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/06/13/marriage-and-the-art-of-game-theory.html
Or at least that’s what Daily Beast editor Paula Szuchman claims in her book It’s Not You, It’s the Dishes. In her book, Szuchman rationalizes how marriage is a game involving two players whom could make use of some basic economic theories to achieve a balanced relationship. “To cooperate or not to cooperate? To budge or stand your ground? To say ‘OK, fine’ or ‘not a chance’? These are questions married people find themselves asking with surprising frequency,” Szuchman explains. “The great thing about game theory is that it tackles situations in which you can’t have it all, but you’d like to at least achieve the best results possible.” In this context, Economics could be a useful tool in forging equilibrium between two spouses.
In a relationship, compromise is often the glue that holds everything together. According to popular game theory, the best choices for all parties are often a compromise on all parts, even when its not the maximum reward possible. Theoretically, game theory is an applicable tool towards building a successful relationship, but is there something unique to relationships that make them unpredictable and unable to be replicated? In most usages of game theory, the value of expected rewards are more quantitative when what determines a “good relationship” is quite subjective and abstract. Even more so, people probably act less rational in their relationships because of the passion and emotional ties that often control people. Game theory can indeed be applied to solve challenges like chores and scheduling to ensure an efficient system within the relationship, but otherwise preferences between people are often not as formulaic as most other economic scenarios.
But in theory, married couples seeking efficiency could look to game theory to help them achieve successful compromises where both spouses feel better off. This is of course given that each person values the same things equally. Whether or not this helps maintain a marriage or just make it streamlined is up for the individual to find out.