About this book
This book both summarizes the basic theory of evolutionary games and explains their developing applications, giving special attention to the 2-player, 2-strategy game. This game, usually termed a "2×2 game” in the jargon, has been deemed most important because it makes it possible to posit an archetype framework that can be extended to various applications for engineering, the social sciences, and even pure science fields spanning theoretical biology, physics, economics, politics, and information science. The 2×2 game is in fact one of the hottest issues in the field of statistical physics. The book first shows how the fundamental theory of the 2×2 game, based on so-called replicator dynamics, highlights its potential relation with nonlinear dynamical systems. This analytical approach implies that there is a gap between theoretical and reality-based prognoses observed in social systems of humans as well as in those of animal species. The book explains that this perceived gap is the result of an underlying reciprocity mechanism called social viscosity. As a second major point, the book puts a sharp focus on network reciprocity, one of the five fundamental mechanisms for adding social viscosity to a system and one that has been a great concern for study by statistical physicists in the past decade. The book explains how network reciprocity works for emerging cooperation, and readers can clearly understand the existence of substantial mechanics when the term "network reciprocity" is used. In the latter part of the book, readers will find several interesting examples in which evolutionary game theory is applied. One such example is traffic flow analysis. Traffic flow is one of the subjects that fluid dynamics can deal with, although flowing objects do not comprise a pure fluid but, rather, are a set of many particles. Applying the framework of evolutionary games to realistic traffic flows, the book reveals that social dilemma structures lie behind traffic flow.