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Cooperation in repeated interactions: A systematic review of Centipede game experiments, 1992–2016

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journal contribution
posted on 2017-03-20, 14:16 authored by Eva M. Krockow, Andrew M. Colman, Briony D. Pulford
Cooperation is a fundamental form of social interaction, and turn-taking reciprocity one of its most familiar manifestations. The Centipede game provides a formal model of such alternating reciprocal cooperation, but a backward induction (BI) argument appears to prove logically that instrumentally rational players would never cooperate in this way. A systematic review of experimental research reveals that human decision makers cooperate frequently in this game, except under certain extreme conditions. Several game, situational, and individual difference variables have been investigated for their influence on cooperation. The most influential are aspects of the payoff function (especially the social gain from cooperation and the risk associated with a cooperative move), the number of players, repetitions of the game, group vs. individual decisions, and players’ social value orientations (SVOs). Our review of experimental evidence suggests that other-regarding preferences, including prosocial behavioural dispositions and collective rationality, provide the most powerful explanation for cooperation.

Funding

We are grateful to the Leicester Judgment and Decision Making Endowment Fund (Grant RM43G0176) and to the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (postgraduate research grant) for support in the preparation of this article.

History

Citation

European Review of Social Psychology, 2016, 27 (1), pp. 231-282

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF MEDICINE, BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES AND PSYCHOLOGY/MBSP Non-Medical Departments/Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour

Version

  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Published in

European Review of Social Psychology

Publisher

Taylor & Francis (Routledge) for European Association of Social Psychology (EASP)

issn

1046-3283

eissn

1479-277X

Acceptance date

2016-10-14

Copyright date

2016

Available date

2017-11-14

Publisher version

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10463283.2016.1249640

Notes

The supplemental data for this article can be accessed at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10463283.2016.1249640;The file associated with this record is under embargo until 12 months after publication, in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.

Language

en

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