The Evolution of Cooperation
   Evolution of the Social Contract
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Axelrod, Robert. 1984.The Evolution of Cooperation. New York, NY: Basic Books. ISBN-13 9780465005642.

Skyrms, Brian. 1996. Evolution of the Social Contract. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. ISBN-13 9780521555838.

A major area of investigation in interpreting cooperation has been simulations of various "game" strategies, to determine which are stable and thus might evolve. Cheaters can disrupt a system of cooperators, for example, proliferate, and ultimately replace the cooperators. Brian Skyrms presents the results of many such models in Evolution of the Social Contract. His work echoes the landmark 1984 Evolution of Cooperation, by Robert Axelrod, which identified a "tit-for-tat" strategy as the most successful against a variety of others. These works might be useful in inspiring students with computer programming skills to set up some simple simluations of their own. Alternatively, a creative teacher might find in them an occasion to develop student activities, wherein students play games in sucessive rounds based on choosing to 'cooperate' or 'defect'. Such activities might provide first-hand experience exploring various factors or assumptions, such as the ability to "punish" non-cooperators, or to opt out of the system.
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