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dc.contributor.author
Johnson, Dominic D.P.
dc.contributor.author
Weidmann, Nils B.
dc.contributor.author
Cederman, Lars-Erik
dc.date.accessioned
2018-09-06T07:56:26Z
dc.date.available
2017-06-09T12:07:41Z
dc.date.available
2018-09-06T07:56:26Z
dc.date.issued
2011-06-24
dc.identifier.issn
1932-6203
dc.identifier.other
10.1371/journal.pone.0020851
en_US
dc.identifier.uri
http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11850/37916
dc.identifier.doi
10.3929/ethz-b-000037916
dc.description.abstract
Overconfidence has long been considered a cause of war. Like other decision-making biases, overconfidence seems detrimental because it increases the frequency and costs of fighting. However, evolutionary biologists have proposed that overconfidence may also confer adaptive advantages: increasing ambition, resolve, persistence, bluffing opponents, and winning net payoffs from risky opportunities despite occasional failures. We report the results of an agent-based model of inter-state conflict, which allows us to evaluate the performance of different strategies in competition with each other. Counter-intuitively, we find that overconfident states predominate in the population at the expense of unbiased or underconfident states. Overconfident states win because: (1) they are more likely to accumulate resources from frequent attempts at conquest; (2) they are more likely to gang up on weak states, forcing victims to split their defences; and (3) when the decision threshold for attacking requires an overwhelming asymmetry of power, unbiased and underconfident states shirk many conflicts they are actually likely to win. These “adaptive advantages” of overconfidence may, via selection effects, learning, or evolved psychology, have spread and become entrenched among modern states, organizations and decision-makers. This would help to explain the frequent association of overconfidence and war, even if it no longer brings benefits today.
en_US
dc.format
application/pdf
en_US
dc.language.iso
en
en_US
dc.publisher
Public Library of Science
en_US
dc.rights.uri
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
dc.title
Fortune Favours the Bold: An Agent-Based Model Reveals Adaptive Advantages of Overconfidence in War
en_US
dc.type
Journal Article
dc.rights.license
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported
ethz.journal.title
PLoS ONE
ethz.journal.volume
6
en_US
ethz.journal.issue
6
en_US
ethz.journal.abbreviated
PLoS ONE
ethz.pages.start
e20851
en_US
ethz.size
8 p.
en_US
ethz.version.deposit
publishedVersion
en_US
ethz.identifier.wos
ethz.identifier.nebis
006206116
ethz.publication.place
Lawrence, KS, USA
en_US
ethz.publication.status
published
en_US
ethz.leitzahl
ETH Zürich::00002 - ETH Zürich::00012 - Lehre und Forschung::00007 - Departemente::02045 - Dep. Geistes-, Sozial- u. Staatswiss. / Dep. of Humanities, Social and Pol.Sc.::03649 - Cederman, Lars-Erik / Cederman, Lars-Erik
en_US
ethz.leitzahl.certified
ETH Zürich::00002 - ETH Zürich::00012 - Lehre und Forschung::00007 - Departemente::02045 - Dep. Geistes-, Sozial- u. Staatswiss. / Dep. of Humanities, Social and Pol.Sc.::03649 - Cederman, Lars-Erik / Cederman, Lars-Erik
ethz.date.deposited
2017-06-09T12:08:12Z
ethz.source
ECIT
ethz.identifier.importid
imp59364e442324588906
ethz.ecitpid
pub:60599
ethz.eth
yes
en_US
ethz.availability
Open access
en_US
ethz.rosetta.installDate
2017-07-20T13:02:30Z
ethz.rosetta.lastUpdated
2018-11-08T01:39:42Z
ethz.rosetta.versionExported
true
ethz.COinS
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