ELI5: Explain Like I'm 5

rubinstein bargaining model

Have you ever tried to share your toys with your little brother or sister but you can't agree on which toy to play with? That's kind of like what the Rubinstein Bargaining Model is all about!

You see, sometimes people have different ideas about what is fair when they're trying to split something up. Let's say you have five toys and your sibling wants to play with three of them - how can you make sure that you're both happy with the outcome?

The Rubinstein Bargaining Model is a fancy way of thinking about how people negotiate to try and get what they want. It's named after a smart man called Ariel Rubinstein who came up with a way to think about these negotiations.

The model involves two people who are trying to split something up - maybe it's toys, maybe it's dessert, or maybe it's something else. Each person has their own idea of what's fair, but they also know that they want to get something rather than nothing.

In the Rubinstein Bargaining Model, the negotiation starts with each person making an offer to the other person. Let's say you offer to let your sibling play with two toys, but they really want three. They counter with an offer to play with four toys, but you don't want to give up that many.

So you start to negotiate back and forth until you both agree on a compromise. Maybe you end up agreeing that your sibling can play with three toys and you get to play with the remaining two. That way, you both get something that you're happy with and you don't feel like you're getting a bad deal.

The Rubinstein Bargaining Model helps us to think about how negotiations work and why sometimes it can take a while to come to a resolution. It also reminds us that fairness is important, but sometimes compromise is necessary to get what we want.