Good standing and cooperation
Indirect reciprocity is generally considered one of the leading mechanisms to explain how cooperation may emerge by natural selection. The basic intuition is that establishing a reputation of being a helpful individual increases the probability of being in turn helped. Two models have been proposed to describe how indirect reciprocity may work: the standing model (Sugden, 1986/2004) and the image-scoring model (Nowak and Sigmund, 1998a,b). Although there is evidence that the former model would perform better under a wide set of circumstances, it is often maintained that it requires individuals with an implausibly large capacity of processing recursive information. In this paper I argue that this is not actually the case. I then suggest that the information needed by the image-scoring model, under reasonable assumptions, may be sufficient for the standing model to work. Finally I emphasize that even if the hypothesis of indirect reciprocity is unable to give a fair account of the ecological bases of cooperation, it has inspired a deal of research precious to social sciences.
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- Bolton, Gary E. & Katok, Elena & Ockenfels, Axel, 2005. "Cooperation among strangers with limited information about reputation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(8), pages 1457-1468, August.
- M.A. Nowak & K. Sigmund, 1998. "Evolution of Indirect Reciprocity by Image Scoring/ The Dynamics of Indirect Reciprocity," Working Papers ir98040, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis.
- Sergio Beraldo & Robert Sugden, 2014.
"The emergence of reciprocally beneficial cooperation,"
CSEF Working Papers
368, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
- Sergio Beraldo & Robert Sugden, 2010. "The emergence of reciprocally beneficial cooperation," ICER Working Papers 18-2010, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
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