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Gift Giving and the Evolution of Cooperation

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  • H. Lorne Carmichael

    (Queen's University)

  • W. Bentley MacLeod

    (Boston College)

Abstract

Gift giving is a practice common to many societies. In an evolutionary model the social custom of giving gifts at the beginning of a relationship can lead to trust and cooperation. The evolutionary approach makes predictions about the character of the goods that can be used as gifts. For example, gift goods may have little use value even at low levels of consumption. Although the gifts themselves are useless, the institution is not.

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File URL: http://fmwww.bc.edu/EC-P/wp338.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 338..

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Length: 35 pages Classification- JEL:
Date of creation: 01 Jan 1997
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:338

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  1. Karl H. Schlag, . "When Does Evolution Lead to Efficiency in Communication Games?," ELSE working papers 026, ESRC Centre on Economics Learning and Social Evolution.
  2. Blume, A. & Kim, Y.G. & Sobel, J., 1992. "Evolutionary Stability in Games of Communication," Working Papers 92-17, University of Iowa, Department of Economics.
  3. Damme, E.E.C. van, 1989. "Stable equilibria and forward induction," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-154422, Tilburg University.
  4. van Damme,Eric, 1987. "Stable equilibria and forward induction," Discussion Paper Serie A 128, University of Bonn, Germany.
  5. Klein, Benjamin & Leffler, Keith B, 1981. "The Role of Market Forces in Assuring Contractual Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 615-41, August.
  6. Binmore, K. & Samuelson, L., 1991. "Evolutionary Stability in Repeated Game Played by Finite Automata," Papers 9131, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  7. Akihiko Matsui, 1989. "Cheap Talk and Cooperation in the Society," Discussion Papers 848, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  8. Gary S. Becker, 1981. "A Treatise on the Family," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number beck81-1, octubre-d.
  9. W. Bentley MacLeod & James M. Malcomson, 1986. "Implicit Contracts, Incentive Compatibility, and Involuntary Unemployment," Working Papers 585, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  10. Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
  11. Binmore, Kenneth G. & Samuelson, Larry, 1992. "Evolutionary stability in repeated games played by finite automata," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 278-305, August.
  12. D. Fudenberg & E. Maskin, 2010. "Evolution and Cooperation in Noisy Repeated Games," Levine's Working Paper Archive 546, David K. Levine.
  13. Carmichael, H Lorne, 1989. "Self-Enforcing Contracts, Shirking, and Life Cycle Incentives," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 65-83, Fall.
  14. Robson, A.J., 1989. "Efficiency In Evolutionary Games: Darwin, Nash And Secret Handshake," Papers 89-22, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  15. Akerlof, George A, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 97(4), pages 543-69, November.
  16. Matsui, Akihiko, 1991. "Cheap-talk and cooperation in a society," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 245-258, August.
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