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Balancing selfishness and norm conformity can explain human behavior in large-scale prisoner’s dilemma games and can poise human groups near criticality
Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, United States.
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. National Research Council, Rome, Italy; Institute for Futures Studies, Stockholm, Sweden.
National Research Council, Rome, Italy.
Universidad de Cartagena, Cartagena de Indias, Bolívar, Colombia.
2018 (English)In: Physical review. E, ISSN 2470-0045, E-ISSN 2470-0053, Vol. 97, no 4, article id 042321Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Cooperation is central to the success of human societies as it is crucial for overcoming some of the most pressing social challenges of our time; still, how human cooperation is achieved and may persist is a main puzzle in the social and biological sciences. Recently, scholars have recognized the importance of social norms as solutions to major local and large-scale collective action problems, from the management of water resources to the reduction of smoking in public places to the change in fertility practices. Yet a well-founded model of the effect of social norms on human cooperation is still lacking. Using statistical-physics techniques and integrating findings from cognitive and behavioral sciences, we present an analytically tractable model in which individuals base their decisions to cooperate both on the economic rewards they obtain and on the degree to which their action complies with social norms. Results from this parsimonious model are in agreement with observations in recent large-scale experiments with humans. We also find the phase diagram of the model and show that the experimental human group is poised near a critical point, a regime where recent work suggests living systems respond to changing external conditions in an efficient and coordinated manner. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
American Physical Society , 2018. Vol. 97, no 4, article id 042321
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-39300DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.97.042321ISI: 000432968600003Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85046638489OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-39300DiVA, id: diva2:1209917
Available from: 2018-05-24 Created: 2018-05-24 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved

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