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Equilibrium population dynamics when mating is by mutual choice based on age

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  • Alpern, Steve
  • Katrantzi, Ioanna
  • Ramsey, David

Abstract

We consider a steady state model of mutual mate choice in which an individual’s mate preferences depend on his/her age, and the preferences are over the ages of prospective mates of the opposite sex. We present a discrete time (and age) model corresponding to successive mating seasons. Males are fertile for m periods (corresponding to ‘age’ i=1 to m) and females for n≤m periods (they have ages j=1 to n), which is all that distinguishes the sexes. Although we can deal with arbitrary preferences, we concentrate on a simple fertility model where the common utility to a male age i and female age j who mate is the number K=min(m−i+1,n−j+1) of future periods of joint fertility. The incoming sex ratio R of age 1 males to age 1 females is given exogenously. In each period individuals are randomly (non assortatively) matched and form a mated couple by mutual consent; otherwise they go into the next period unmated and older. We derive properties of equilibrium threshold acceptance strategies and establish the existence of time-invariant age distributions. Our methods determine the age distribution of couples at marriage (mating) and the population sex ratio (OSR) at equilibrium. Since this can be determined empirically in a population, our model can be used to rule out most systems of age preferences (those not consistent with the observed distribution). This extends earlier models of mutual choice with one dimensional types of Alpern and Reyniers [1999. Strategic mating with homotypic preferences. J. Theor. Biol. 198, 71–88; 2005. Strategic mating with common preferences. J. Theor. Biol. 237, 337–354] where individuals sought, respectively, individuals with similar or high types, but in those models an individual’s type was fixed over time.

Suggested Citation

  • Alpern, Steve & Katrantzi, Ioanna & Ramsey, David, 2014. "Equilibrium population dynamics when mating is by mutual choice based on age," Theoretical Population Biology, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 63-72.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:thpobi:v:94:y:2014:i:c:p:63-72
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tpb.2013.01.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kimmo Eriksson & Olle Häggström, 2008. "Instability of matchings in decentralized markets with various preference structures," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 36(3), pages 409-420, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tadeas Priklopil & Krishnendu Chatterjee, 2015. "Evolution of Decisions in Population Games with Sequentially Searching Individuals," Games, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 6(4), pages 1-25, September.

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