Philosophy of Science 65 (1):76-102 (1998)

Authors
Robert W. Batterman
University of Pittsburgh
Abstract
Game theoretic explanations of the evolution of human behavior have become increasingly widespread. At their best, they allow us to abstract from misleading particulars in order to better recognize and appreciate broad patterns in the phenomena of human social life. We discuss this explanatory strategy, contrasting it with the particularist methodology of contemporary evolutionary psychology. We introduce some guidelines for the assessment of evolutionary game theoretic explanations of human behavior: such explanations should be representative, robust, and flexible. Distinguishing these features sharply can help to clarify the import and accuracy of game theorists' claims about the robustness and stability of their explanatory schemes. Our central example is the work of Brian Skyrms, who offers a game theoretic account of the evolution of our sense of justice. Modeling the same Nash game as Skyrms, we show that, while Skyrms' account is robust with respect to certain kinds of variation, it fares less well in other respects.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1086/392627
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 51,756
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Robustness Analysis and Tractability in Modeling.Chiara Lisciandra - 2017 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 7 (1):79-95.

View all 17 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Evolutionary Considerations in the Framing of Social Norms.B. Skyrms & K. J. S. Zollman - 2010 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 9 (3):265-273.
Distinctive Human Social Motivations in a Game-Theoretic Framework.Don Ross - 2005 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (5):715-716.
On the Narrow Epistemology of Game Theoretic Agents.Boudewijn de Bruin - 2009 - In Ondrej Majer, Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen & Tero Tulenheimo (eds.), Games: Unifying Logic, Language, and Philosophy. Springer.
Explaining the Social Contract.Zachary Ernst - 2001 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (1):1-24.
Game Theory and Conventiont.Neil Tennant - 2001 - Nordic Journal of Philosophical Logic 6 (1):3-19.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
344 ( #19,762 of 2,333,944 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #585,936 of 2,333,944 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes