- Journal Article
We consider an environment where players are involved in a public goods game and must decide repeatedly whether to make an individual contribution or not. However, players lack strategically relevant information about the game and about the other players in the population. The resulting behavior of players is completely uncoupled from such information, and the individual strategy adjustment dynamics are driven only by reinforcement feedbacks from each player's own past. We show that the resulting “directional learning” is sufficient to explain cooperative deviations away from the Nash equilibrium. We introduce the concept of k–strong equilibria, which nest both the Nash equilibrium and the Aumann-strong equilibrium as two special cases, and we show that, together with the parameters of the learning model, the maximal k–strength of equilibrium determines the stationary distribution. The provisioning of public goods can be secured even under adverse conditions, as long as players are sufficiently responsive to the changes in their own payoffs and adjust their actions accordingly. Substantial levels of public cooperation can thus be explained without arguments involving selflessness or social preferences, solely on the basis of uncoordinated directional (mis)learning. Show more
Journal / seriesScientific Reports
Pages / Article No.
PublisherNature Publishing Group
SubjectPhase transitions and critical phenomena; Climate-change mitigation; Sustainability; Statistical physics
Organisational unit03784 - Helbing, Dirk / Helbing, Dirk
MoreShow all metadata