Evolution and Rationality: Decisions, Co-operation and Strategic Behaviour

Evolution and Rationality: Decisions, Co-operation and Strategic Behaviour

by Samir Okasha
     
 

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This volume explores from multiple perspectives the subtle and interesting relationship between the theory of rational choice and Darwinian evolution. In rational choice theory, agents are assumed to make choices that maximize their utility; in evolution, natural selection 'chooses' between phenotypes according to the criterion of fitness maximization. So there is a…  See more details below

Overview

This volume explores from multiple perspectives the subtle and interesting relationship between the theory of rational choice and Darwinian evolution. In rational choice theory, agents are assumed to make choices that maximize their utility; in evolution, natural selection 'chooses' between phenotypes according to the criterion of fitness maximization. So there is a parallel between utility in rational choice theory and fitness in Darwinian theory. This conceptual link between fitness and utility is mirrored by the interesting parallels between formal models of evolution and rational choice. The essays in this volume, by leading philosophers, economists, biologists and psychologists, explore the connection between evolution and rational choice in a number of different contexts, including choice under uncertainty, strategic decision making and pro-social behaviour. They will be of interest to students and researchers in philosophy of science, evolutionary biology, economics and psychology.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Evolution and Rationality is a stimulating collection of work that should be of interest to philosophers, biologists, psychologists and economists alike …the book is an excellent and much needed contribution to an area that demands interdisciplinary attention."
Rory Smead, Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Science

"… despite the increasing amount of literature on evolution and on rationality, this book represents a good picture of the state of the art and, at the same time, a useful tool for people studying cooperation and evolution."
International Review of Economics

"Evolution and Rationality is ideal for getting up to speed on the issues at the overlap of economic rationality and evolutionary theory."
Ryan Muldoon, Journal of Economics and Philosophy

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781107004993
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
06/21/2012
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

Ken Binmore is Professor Emeritus of Economics at University College London and a Visiting Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Bristol. He is the author of Natural Justice (2005), Game Theory: A Very Short Introduction (2007) and Rational Decisions (2008).

Samir Okasha is Professor of Philosophy of Science at the University of Bristol. He is the author of Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction (2002) and Evolution and the Levels of Selection (2006).

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