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Payoff information hampers the evolution of cooperation

Huck, S; Leutgeb, J; Oprea, R; (2017) Payoff information hampers the evolution of cooperation. Nature Communications , 8 , Article 15147. 10.1038/ncomms15147. Green open access

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Human cooperation has been explained through rationality as well as heuristics-based models. Both model classes share the feature that knowledge of payoff functions is weakly beneficial for the emergence of cooperation. Here, we present experimental evidence to the contrary. We let human subjects interact in a competitive environment and find that, in the long run, access to information about own payoffs leads to less cooperative behaviour. In the short run subjects use naive learning heuristics that get replaced by better adapted heuristics in the long run. With more payoff information subjects are less likely to switch to pro-cooperative heuristics. The results call for the development of two-tier models for the evolution of cooperation.

Type: Article
Title: Payoff information hampers the evolution of cooperation
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15147
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ncomms15147
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1573625
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