Evolutionary Stability of Kantian Optimization

21 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2012

See all articles by Philip A. Curry

Philip A. Curry

University of Waterloo

John E. Roemer

Yale University - Department of Political Science; Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Date Written: April 22, 2012


In Nash equilibrium, agents are autarchic in their optimization protocol, whereas in Kantian equilibrium, they optimize in an interdependent way. Typically, researchers into the evolution of homo economicus treat preferences as being determined by selective adaptation, but hold fixed the optimization protocol as autarchic. Here, we ask whether natural selection might choose the optimizing protocol to be either autarchic or interdependent. That is, will Kantian players, for whom the stable concept is Kantian equilibrium drive Nash players (for whom the stable concept is Nash equilibrium) to extinction, or otherwise? The answer depends upon whether players can signal their type to others.

Keywords: Kantian equilibrium, Nash equilibrium, evolutionary stable strategy, cooperation

JEL Classification: C73, C62, D64

Suggested Citation

Curry, Philip A. and Roemer, John E., Evolutionary Stability of Kantian Optimization (April 22, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2112098 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2112098

Philip A. Curry (Contact Author)

University of Waterloo ( email )

Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1

John E. Roemer

Yale University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Box 208269
New Haven, DC 06520-8269
United States
203-432-5249 (Phone)
203-432-6196 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://pantheon.yale.edu/~jer39/

Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Box 208281
New Haven, CT 06520-8281
United States

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