Reciprocity is a major factor in human social life and accounts for a large part of cooperation in our communities. Direct reciprocity arises when repeated interactions occur between the same individuals. The framework of iterated games formalizes this phenomenon. Despite being introduced more than five decades ago, the concept keeps offering beautiful surprises. Recent theoretical research driven by new mathematical tools has proposed a remarkable dichotomy among the crucial strategies: successful individuals either act as partners or as rivals. Rivals strive for unilateral advantages by applying selfish or extortionate strategies. Partners aim to share the payoff for mutual cooperation, but are ready to fight back when being exploited. Which of these behaviours evolves depends on the environment. Whereas small population sizes and a limited number of rounds favour rivalry, partner strategies are selected when populations are large and relationships stable. Only partners allow for evolution of cooperation, while the rivals’ attempt to put themselves first leads to defection. Hilbe et al. synthesize recent theoretical work on zero-determinant and ‘rival’ versus ‘partner’ strategies in social dilemmas. They describe the environments under which these contrasting selfish or cooperative strategies emerge in evolution.
Nature Human Behaviour
Hilbe C, Chatterjee K, Nowak M. Partners and rivals in direct reciprocity. Nature Human Behaviour. 2018;2:469–477. doi:10.1038/s41562-018-0320-9
Hilbe, C., Chatterjee, K., & Nowak, M. (2018). Partners and rivals in direct reciprocity. Nature Human Behaviour, 2, 469–477. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-018-0320-9
Hilbe, Christian, Krishnendu Chatterjee, and Martin Nowak. “Partners and Rivals in Direct Reciprocity.” Nature Human Behaviour 2 (2018): 469–477. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-018-0320-9.
C. Hilbe, K. Chatterjee, and M. Nowak, “Partners and rivals in direct reciprocity,” Nature Human Behaviour, vol. 2, pp. 469–477, 2018.
Hilbe C, Chatterjee K, Nowak M. 2018. Partners and rivals in direct reciprocity. Nature Human Behaviour. 2, 469–477.
Hilbe, Christian, et al. “Partners and Rivals in Direct Reciprocity.” Nature Human Behaviour, vol. 2, Nature Publishing Group, 2018, pp. 469–477, doi:10.1038/s41562-018-0320-9.