Publication detail

The Rise and Fall of Confessions: An Evolutionary Game Theory Approach

Author(s): doc. PhDr. Martin Gregor Ph.D.,
Type: Article in collection
Year: 2005
Published in: Lehoczky, L. & L. Kalmar, eds. (2005). 5th International Conference of PhD Students. University of Miskolc, Miskolc. ISBN: 963-661-6760.
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Grants: GACR 402/05/H510 Ekonomická teorie politických trhů IES Research Framework Institutional task (2005-2011) Integration of the Czech economy into European union and its development
Abstract: Man needs to confess in order to make life meaningful. From that perspective, confession is an economic good entering utility function. Confessions however include unverifiable statements, which prevent rational actors from choosing optimal confessions ex ante. Confessions must be selected differently, namely in an evolutionary contest when a high relative utility increases the likelihood of survival.
In the paper, I provide with an evolutionary competition of confessions. Members with different confessions meet in repeated bilateral interactions and receive payoffs. I distinguish between strength (intensity) and intolerance (extensity) of confessions. The thrust of the paper is to identify stability conditions using a simple concept of evolutionarily stable strategies. The main result is that extensive (intolerant/evangelical) confessions are vulnerable in heterogeneous societies, even if in homogeneous societies they have evolutionary fitness as large as tolerant confessions.


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