Evolutionary Game Theory
Teacher(s)Matthijs van Veelen
Research fieldBehavioral Economics
DatesPeriod 3 - Jan 08, 2024 to Mar 01, 2024
The class follows the UvA Acedemic Calendar. UvA Block 4 is from 5 February-28 March 2024.
In an infinite population setting, we will learn to use static equilibrium concepts (such as the evolutionary stable strategy), dynamic concepts (such as the replicator dynamics), and we will learn what the relation is between these. In a finite population setting, we will learn what the Moran process is, and get accustomed to evolutionary graph theory.
In order to explain the evolution of prosocial behaviour, we will then apply these evolutionary dynamics and stability concepts to settings with population structure (which then leads to kin selection and/or group selection), repetition (which can lead to the evolution of reciprocity), and partner choice/sexual selection (and its relation to signaling in economic theory). We will also look at subgame perfect equilibria in games where commitment to "rationally irrational" behaviour (such as altruism or vengefulness) can have an evolutionary advantage.
We will consider how these predictions can be tested, in and outside the lab, and discuss parts of the empirical literature with each other.
- Weibull, J.W. (1995). Evolutionary Game Theory, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA
- Nowak, M.A. (2006). Evolutionary dynamics: exploring the equations of life, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA