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Natural selection and social preferences

Author

Listed:
  • Weibull, Jörgen

    () (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Salomonsson, Marcus

    () (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

Abstract

A large number of individuals are randomly matched into groups, where each group plays a finite symmetric game. Individuals breed true. The expected number of surviving offspring depends on own material payoff, but may also, due to cooperative breeding and/or reproductive competition, depend on the material payoffs to other group members. The induced population dynamic is equivalent with the replicator dynamic for a game with payoffs derived from those in the original game. We apply this selection dynamic to a number of examples, including prisoners' dilemma games with and without a punishment option, coordination games, and hawk-dove games. For each of these, we compare the outcomes with those obtained under the standard replicator dynamic. By way of a revealed-preference argument, our selection dynamic can explain certain "altruistic" and "spiteful" behaviors that are consistent with individuals having social preferences.

Suggested Citation

  • Weibull, Jörgen & Salomonsson, Marcus, 2005. "Natural selection and social preferences," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 588, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 27 Sep 2005.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0588
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Galor, Oded & Michalopoulos, Stelios, 2012. "Evolution and the growth process: Natural selection of entrepreneurial traits," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(2), pages 759-780.
    2. Ingela Alger & Jörgen W. Weibull, 2006. "Altruism and Climate," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 643, Boston College Department of Economics.
    3. Galor, Oded & Michalopoulos, Stelios, 2006. "The Evolution of Entrepreneurial Spirit and the Process of Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 6022, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Oded Galor & Stelios Michalopoulos, 2006. "Darwinian Evolution of Entrepreneurial Spirit and the Process of Development," Working Papers 2006-12, Brown University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Group selection; social preferences; altruism; fairness.;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers

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