Statistical physics of the spatial Prisoner’s Dilemma with memory-aware agents

Regular Article

Abstract

We introduce an analytical model to study the evolution towards equilibrium in spatial games, with ‘memory-aware’ agents, i.e., agents that accumulate their payoff over time. In particular, we focus our attention on the spatial Prisoner’s Dilemma, as it constitutes an emblematic example of a game whose Nash equilibrium is defection. Previous investigations showed that, under opportune conditions, it is possible to reach, in the evolutionary Prisoner’s Dilemma, an equilibrium of cooperation. Notably, it seems that mechanisms like motion may lead a population to become cooperative. In the proposed model, we map agents to particles of a gas so that, on varying the system temperature, they randomly move. In doing so, we are able to identify a relation between the temperature and the final equilibrium of the population, explaining how it is possible to break the classical Nash equilibrium in the spatial Prisoner’s Dilemma when considering agents able to increase their payoff over time. Moreover, we introduce a formalism to study order-disorder phase transitions in these dynamics. As result, we highlight that the proposed model allows to explain analytically how a population, whose interactions are based on the Prisoner’s Dilemma, can reach an equilibrium far from the expected one; opening also the way to define a direct link between evolutionary game theory and statistical physics.

Keywords

Statistical and Nonlinear Physics 

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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and Computer ScienceUniversity of CagliariCagliariItaly
  2. 2.DUMAS – Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of SassariSassariItaly

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