It has been realised for some time how game theory can model natural selection. Evolutionary game theory replaces the concept of rational players with the population dynamics of behavioural programmes and can be used to understand the strategic and genetic foundations of the endless chronicle of invasions and extinctions which punctuate evolution.
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'… as a mathematical text on an important set of topics in theoretical biology, the book is superb. It is well organised and beautifully written. In choosing from the rich menu of mathematical topics broadly relevant to ecology, behaviour, evolution, and even theoretical immunology, it shows good taste.' The Times Higher Education Supplement
'… [has] something for anyone interested in game models in organismal biology.' Marc Mangel, Nature
'The book is a must for any mathematician economist, or biologist working in Evolutionary Game Theory.' C. Alos-Ferrer, International Mathematical News
'This book can highly be recommended to mathematicians interested in applications in social sciences, biology, and population genetics.' Ethology
'… an excellent publication that helps to bridge one of the gaps between biologists and mathematicians.' David Boukai, Folia Geobotanica
Every form of behaviour is shaped by trial and error. Such stepwise adaptation can occur through individual learning or through natural selection, the basis of evolution. Since the work of Maynard Smith and others, it has been realised how game theory can model this process. Evolutionary game theory replaces the static solutions of classical game theory by a dynamical approach centred not on the concept of rational players but on the population dynamics of behavioural programmes. In this book the authors investigate the nonlinear dynamics of the self-regulation of social and economic behaviour, and of the closely related interactions between species in ecological communities. Replicator equations describe how successful strategies spread and thereby create new conditions which can alter the basis of their success, i.e. to enable us to understand the strategic and genetic foundations of the endless chronicle of invasions and extinctions which punctuate evolution. In short, evolutionary game theory describes when to escalate a conflict, how to elicit cooperation, why to expect a balance of the sexes, and how to understand natural selection in mathematical terms.
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