Network modularity promotes cooperation

Marianne Marcoux, David Lusseau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cooperation in animals and humans is widely observed even if evolutionary biology theories predict the evolution of selfish individuals. Previous game theory models have shown that cooperation can evolve when the game takes place in a structured population such as a social network because it limits interactions between individuals. Modularity, the natural division of a network into groups, is a key characteristic of all social networks but the influence of this crucial social feature on the evolution of cooperation has never been investigated. Here, we provide novel evidences that network modularity promotes the evolution of cooperation in 2-person prisoner's dilemma games. By simulating games on social networks of different structures, we show that modularity shapes interactions between individuals favouring the evolution of cooperation. Modularity provides a simple mechanism for the evolution of cooperation without having to invoke complicated mechanisms such as reputation or punishment, or requiring genetic similarity among individuals. Thus, cooperation can evolve over wider social contexts than previously reported.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-108
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Theoretical Biology
Volume324
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 May 2013

Fingerprint

Evolution of Cooperation
Game theory
Modularity
Social Support
Animals
social networks
Social Networks
Game Theory
Punishment
Game
Prisoner's Dilemma Game
prison inmates
Structured Populations
game theory
Interaction
Biology
Division
Person
Predict
Population

Keywords

  • evolution
  • game theory
  • social network

Cite this

Network modularity promotes cooperation. / Marcoux, Marianne; Lusseau, David.

In: Journal of Theoretical Biology, Vol. 324, 07.05.2013, p. 103-108.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Marcoux, Marianne ; Lusseau, David. / Network modularity promotes cooperation. In: Journal of Theoretical Biology. 2013 ; Vol. 324. pp. 103-108.
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