Cycles of cooperation and free-riding in social systems

Ma, Yi-Ping, Gonçalves, S., Mignot, S., Nadal, J.-P. and Gordon, M. B. (2009) Cycles of cooperation and free-riding in social systems. The European Physical Journal B, 71 (4). pp. 597-610. ISSN 1434-6028

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1140/epjb/e2009-00325-x

Abstract

Basic evidences on non-profit making and other forms of benevolent-based organizations reveal a rough partition of members between some pure consumers of the public good (free-riders) and benevolent individuals (cooperators). We study the relationship between the community size and the level of cooperation in a simple model where the utility of joining the community is proportional to its size. We assume an idiosyncratic willingness to join the community ; cooperation bears a fixed cost while free-riding bears a (moral) idiosyncratic cost proportional to the fraction of cooperators. We show that the system presents two types of equilibria: fixed points (Nash equilibria) with a mixture of cooperators and free-riders and cycles where the size of the community, as well as the proportion of cooperators and free-riders, vary periodically.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: F300 Physics
L300 Sociology
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Mathematics and Information Sciences
Depositing User: Yi-Ping Ma
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2016 10:39
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2016 10:39
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/28413

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