Higher Intelligence Groups Have Higher Cooperation Rates in the Repeated Prisoner's Dilemma

60 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2014  

Eugenio Proto

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Aldo Rustichini

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Department of Economics

Andis Sofianos

University of Warwick

Abstract

Intelligence affects social outcomes of groups. A systematic study of the link is provided in an experiment where two groups of subjects with different levels of intelligence, but otherwise similar, play a repeated prisoner's dilemma. The initial cooperation rates are similar, it increases in the groups with higher intelligence to reach almost full cooperation, while declining in the groups with lower intelligence. The difference is produced by the cumulation of small but persistent differences in the response to past cooperation of the partner. In higher intelligence subjects, cooperation after the initial stages is immediate and becomes the default mode, defection instead requires more time. For lower intelligence groups this difference is absent. Cooperation of higher intelligence subjects is payoff sensitive, thus not automatic: in a treatment with lower continuation probability there is no difference between different intelligence groups.

Keywords: repeated prisoner dilemma, cooperation, intelligence

JEL Classification: C73, C92

Suggested Citation

Proto, Eugenio and Rustichini, Aldo and Sofianos, Andis, Higher Intelligence Groups Have Higher Cooperation Rates in the Repeated Prisoner's Dilemma. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8499. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2505361

Eugenio Proto (Contact Author)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) ( email )

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Aldo Rustichini

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Department of Economics ( email )

271 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Andis Sofianos

University of Warwick ( email )

Gibbet Hill Rd.
Coventry, CV4 8UW
United Kingdom

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