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Is altruism evolutionarily stable?

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  • Bester, Helmut
  • Guth, Werner

Abstract

We develop an evolutionary approach to explain altruistic preferences. Given their preferences, individuals interact rationally with each other. By comparing the success of players with different preferences, we investigate whether evolution favors altruistic or selfish attitudes. The outcome depends on whether the individuals' interactions are strategic complements or substitutes. Altruism and self-interest are context dependent.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

Volume (Year): 34 (1998)
Issue (Month): 2 (February)
Pages: 193-209

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:34:y:1998:i:2:p:193-209

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  1. Matthew Rabin., 1992. "Incorporating Fairness into Game Theory and Economics," Economics Working Papers 92-199, University of California at Berkeley.
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