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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Game Theory by Edward Rosenthal, Ph.D., Edward C. Rosenthal

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How Cooperation Can Evolve

The Prisoner’s Dilemma catches everyone’s eye because it not only seems to capture a lot of mixed-motive interactions in our social and business worlds, but also is something of a metaphor for life itself. Some say that nice guys finish last. Indeed, rational play in the PD dictates that nice guys will be steamrolled by the meanies.
But the gang of four opened the door, theoretically, for cooperation to emerge. And you’ve also seen that real people, at least in laboratory experiments, do indicate a willingness to cooperate that goes beyond any semblance of rational theory. Now let’s see how other researchers have utilized a new tool—computer simulations—that further help us understand the nature of cooperative play ...

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