The Economic Behaviour of the Individual

  • David McFarland


In Chapter 1 we focused on the evolution of Homo sapiens. In this chapter we focus on the individual, that is Homo economicus, an imaginary, “rational”, individual with a long history.


Wage Rate Basal Metabolic Rate Economic Behaviour Biological Base Indifference Curve 
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Further reading

  1. Cuthill, I.C. and Houston, A.I. (1997) Managing time and energy. In Krebs, J.R. and Davies, N.B. (eds) Behavioural Ecology, 4th edn. Blackwell, Oxford.Google Scholar
  2. Heinrich, B. (1979) Bumblebee Economics. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
  3. Kacelnik, A. (2006) Meanings of rationality. In Hurley, S. and Nudds, M. (eds) Rational Animals. Oxford University Press, Oxford.Google Scholar
  4. McFarland, D. (1989) Economic Altruism. In Problems of Animal Behaviour, pp. 59–80. Longman, London and Wiley, New York.Google Scholar
  5. McFarland, D.J. and Houston, A.I. (1981) Quantitative Ethology: The State Space Approach. Pitman, London.Google Scholar
  6. Stephens, D.W. and Krebs, J.R. (1986) Foraging Theory. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ.Google Scholar

Essential reading (for the modelling problem)

  1. Simpson, S.J. and Raubenheimer, D. (2007) A multi-level analysis of feeding behaviour. The geometry of nutrition. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B. Biol. Sci., 62A, 707–713.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© David McFarland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • David McFarland
    • 1
  1. 1.Balliol CollegeUniversity of OxfordUK

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