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Article
The evolution of cooperative hierarchies through natural selection processes.
Faculty Publications
  • Deby L. Cassill
  • Alison Watkins
SelectedWorks Author Profiles:

Deby L. Cassill

Alison L. Watkins

Document Type
Article
Publication Date
2010
Date Issued
2010-01-01
Disciplines
Abstract
According to a bioeconomic model called skew selection, individuals form cooperative hierarchies when coping with high risk environments that include predators and cycles of scarce resources. This paper reports a study that used agent-based computer simulations to experimentally test the predictions of skew selection. Results of the experiment showed that successful face-to-face transaction strategies varied with environmental risks. Risks involving resource scarcity favored clustering and stealing. Risks involving predators favored clustering and hoarding. A combination of risks involving resource scarcity and predators favored clustering and sharing. Wealthy donors gained safety-in-numbers to protect them from predators; at the same time, marginal recipients gained resources to protect them from starving. In summary, our findings show that even though natural selection is not a moral process, it can produce moral behavior.
Comments

Abstract only. Full-text article is available only through licensed access provided by the publisher. Published in Journal of Bioeconomics, 12(1), 29-42. doi:10.1007/s10818-010-9080-y Members of the USF System may access the full-text of the article through the authenticated link provided.

Publisher
Springer Verlag
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0
Citation Information
Cassill, D., & Watkins, A. (2010). The evolution of cooperative hierarchies through natural selection processes. Journal of Bioeconomics, 12(1), 29-42. doi:10.1007/s10818-010-9080-y