Computational Model Library

Cultural Group Selection of Sustainable Institutions

Timothy Waring Sandra H Goff Paul Smaldino | Published Wed Jun 10 17:38:06 2015 | Last modified Tue Aug 4 14:14:05 2015

We develop a spatial, evolutionary model of the endogenous formation and dissolution of groups using a renewable common pool resource. We use this foundation to measure the evolutionary pressures at different organizational levels.

We model interpersonal dynamics and study behavior in the classroom in the hypothetical case of a single teacher who defines students’ seating arrangements. The model incorporates the mechanisms of peer influence on study behavior, on attitude formation, and homophilous selection in order to depict the interrelated dynamics of networks, behavior, and attitudes. We compare various seating arrangement scenarios and observe how GPA distribution and level of prejudice changes over time.

Previous work with the spatial iterated prisoner’s dilemma has shown that “walk away” cooperators are able to outcompete defectors as well as cooperators that do not respond to defection, but it remains to be seen just how robust the so-called walk away strategy is to ecologically important variables such as population density, error, and offspring dispersal. Our simulation experiments identify socio-ecological conditions in which natural selection favors strategies that emphasize forgiveness over flight in the spatial iterated prisoner’s dilemma. Our interesting results are best explained by considering how population density, error, and offspring dispersal affect the opportunity cost associated with walking away from an error-prone partner.

Evolution of altruistic punishment

Marco Janssen | Published Wed Sep 3 21:01:26 2008 | Last modified Sat Mar 9 01:22:54 2019

In the model agents make decisions to contribute of not to the public good of a group, and cooperators may punish, at a cost, defectors. The model is based on group selection, and is used to understan

This study investigates a possible nexus between inter-group competition and intra-group cooperation, which may be called “tribalism.” Building upon previous studies demonstrating a relationship between the environment and social relations, the present research incorporates a social-ecological model as a mediating factor connecting both individuals and communities to the environment. Cyclical and non-cyclical fluctuation in a simple, two-resource ecology drive agents to adopt either “go-it-alone” or group-based survival strategies via evolutionary selection. Novelly, this simulation employs a multilevel selection model allowing group-level dynamics to exert downward selective pressures on individuals’ propensity to cooperate within groups. Results suggest that cooperation and inter-group conflict are co-evolved in a triadic relationship with the environment. Resource scarcity increases inter-group competition, especially when resources are clustered as opposed to widely distributed. Moreover, the tactical advantage of cooperation in the securing of clustered resources enhanced selective pressure on cooperation, even if that implies increased individual mortality for the most altruistic warriors. Troubling, these results suggest that extreme weather, possibly as a result of climate change, could exacerbate conflict in sensitive, weather-dependent social-ecologies—especially places like the Horn of Africa where ecologically sensitive economic modalities overlap with high-levels of diversity and the wide-availability of small arms. As well, global development and foreign aid strategists should consider how plans may increase the value of particular locations where community resources are built or aid is distributed, potentially instigating tribal conflict. In sum, these factors, interacting with pre-existing social dynamics dynamics, may heighten inter-ethnic or tribal conflict in pluralistic but otherwise peaceful communities.

For special issue submission in JASSS.

In order to test how prosocial strategies (compassionate altruism vs. reciprocity) grow over time, we developed an evolutionary simulation model where artificial agents are equipped with different emotionally-based drivers that vary in strength. Evolutionary algorithms mimic the evolutionary selection process by letting the chances of agents conceiving offspring depend on their fitness. Equipping the agents with heritable prosocial strategies allows for a selection of those strategies that result in the highest fitness. Since some prosocial attributes may be more successful than others, an initially heterogeneous population can specialize towards altruism or reciprocity. The success of particular prosocial strategies is also expected to depend on the cultural norms and environmental conditions the agents live in.

EthnoCultural Tag model (ECT)

David Hales Bruce Edmonds | Published Fri Oct 16 13:26:37 2015 | Last modified Wed May 9 10:04:58 2018

Captures interplay between fixed ethnic markers and culturally evolved tags in the evolution of cooperation and ethnocentrism. Agents evolve cultural tags, behavioural game strategies and in-group definitions. Ethnic markers are fixed.


Cara Kahl | Published Fri Jul 8 16:08:03 2011 | Last modified Mon Aug 4 07:31:27 2014

CREativity from a SYstems perspective, Model II.

This model illustrates how the effective population size and the rate of change in mean skill level of a cultural trait are affected by the presence of natural selection and/or the cultural transmission mechanism by which it is passed.

Mobility USA (MUSA)

Davide Natalini Giangiacomo Bravo | Published Sun Dec 8 19:24:09 2013 | Last modified Mon Dec 30 19:22:17 2013

MUSA is an ABM that simulates the commuting sector in USA. A multilevel validation was implemented. Social network with a social-circle structure included. Two types of policies have been tested: market-based and preference-change.

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