Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
A Cooperative SpeciesHuman Reciprocity and Its Evolution$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691151250

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691151250.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 30 July 2021

The Evolution of Strong Reciprocity

The Evolution of Strong Reciprocity

Chapter:
(p.148) 9 The Evolution of Strong Reciprocity
Source:
A Cooperative Species
Author(s):

Samuel Bowles

Herbert Gintis

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691151250.003.0009

This chapter focuses on the evolution of strong reciprocity. A predisposition to cooperate and a willingness to punish defectors is known as strong reciprocity, and it is the combination of the two that is essential to human cooperation. Punishment reduces the gain to free-riding, and may induce even entirely self-interested individuals to cooperate. Before explaining how a willingness to punish those who violate social norms even at personal cost could have evolved, the chapter considers how punishment is coordinated among group members so that it is contingent on the number of others predisposed to participate in the punishment. It also shows that punishment is characterized by increasing returns to scale, so the total cost of punishing a particular target declines as the number of punishers increases. Finally, it discusses the results of simulations that illustrate the emergence of strong reciprocity and examines why coordinated punishment succeeds.

Keywords:   evolution, strong reciprocity, human cooperation, free-riding, social norms, punishment, coordinated punishment

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.