his theories, and (3) make predictions, aboutfor example, when and where. 8 People are "nice both in the everyday sense and the technical sense from game theory, in that they willingly confer a large benefit to a stranger at a small cost to themselves, because that has some probability of initiating a mutually beneficial long-term relationship. Most people want to feel like they belong and have an important role in society. Punishment sustains large-scale cooperation in prestate warfare. The gut is likely the site of the most dynamic and consequential bacteria signaling that benefits animal hosts, because of the sheer numbers and diversity of its microbes and the inherent permeability and sensitivity of the gut epithelium. Experimental studies relying on a variety of methodologies, however, have revealed that when people punish harmdoers, they generally ignore factors related to deterrence (likelihood of detection, publicity of the punishment, likelihood of repeat offending) and instead take into account parameters that are relevant to restore.
In such cases one can separate the benefits that accrue to the entire group (including me) and whatever benefits or costs are assumed by me but no one else in the group. The Problem With Group Selection Steven Pinker's elegant essay points out the theoretical problems with group (or "multilevel selection, how it is regularly misunderstood and misapplied, and how group selection promoting genetic evolution is regularly conflated with processes promoting cultural evolutionnongenetic change in human society.
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For example, the finding that successful strategies are generally "nice meaning they always cooperate on round 1, was shown to be an artifact of the standard formulation of reciprocity models. To be clear, these models do NOT require any assumptions about replicators, discrete traits, longevity, fidelity or fecundity. It may tell us something about the strength of group selection in humans that clearcut cases of genetic traits selected against within the group, but favored at the group level have not yet been established. Is Group Selection Necessary to Explain Morality, Sociality, and Culture? People invoke it to refer to many distinct phenomena, so casual users may literally not know what they are talking about. 7 See ( Daly, Salmon, Wilson, 1997 ; Fiske, 1991 ; LIeberman., 2007 ). Likewise, if you want to see group-selected traits in action, look at groups that are actively competing with other groups. There are reasons for calling these phenomena a variety of group selection, reasons ably recounted by Boyd and Richerson in many publications, but better reasonsin my opinionfor avoiding the label, precisely because it seems to give support to the vague and misguided ideas of group. The puzzle of monogamous marriage. Following the rejection of group selection, it was common for authors to treat the concept of genes as cosmopolitan personal essay replicators as an argument against group selection all by itself.
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