Variable valuations and voluntarism under group selection: An evolutionary public goods game.

TitleVariable valuations and voluntarism under group selection: An evolutionary public goods game.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
JournalJournal of theoretical biology
Volume265
Issue3
Pagination238-44
Date Published2010
ISSN0022-5193
Abstract

In biological systems, as in human society, competing social groups may depend heavily on a small number of volunteers to advance the group's prospects. This phenomenon can be understood as the solution to an evolutionary public goods game, in which a beneficent individual or a small number of individuals may place the highest value on group success and contribute the most to achieving it while profiting very little. Here we demonstrate that this type of solution, recently recognized in the social sciences, is evolutionarily stable and evolves in evolutionary simulations sensitive to alternative ways of gaining fitness beyond the present social group. The public goods mechanism may help explain biological voluntarism in cases like predator inspection and foraging on behalf of non-relatives and may determine the extent of commitment to group welfare at different intensities of group selection.

URLhttp://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0022-5193(10)00234-1
DOI10.1016/j.jtbi.2010.05.005
Short TitleJ Theor Biol
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