Game theory in the popular press.


Game theory and economics in the news

May 5, 2006 The Scientist, Sexual selection alternative slammed
Angry letters respond to a review article in Science which suggested that cooperative game theory is a better model of reproduction than Darwin's sexual selection. (by Nick Atkinson)
September 2005 American Scientist, Cheating viruses and game theory
A certain bacteria-eatring virus plays the prisoner's dilemma, with "cheat" a substantial proportion evolving to play "cheat." (by Paul E. Turner)
January 20, 2005 The Economist, Games people play
An evolutionary take on public goods contribution experiments, in which subject populations may converge to mixed strategies
September 2004 Monash University Newsline, Invasive ants form giant supercolony in Melbourne
Colonies of generally competitive ants have been found with a genetic mutation that turns off competitiveness and allows for large-scale cooperation (by Ingrid Sanders)
September 17, 2003 National Geographic, Monkeys show sense of fairness, study says
The finding that monkeys have an innate sense of fairness may mean that altruism may be quite rational.
September 17, 2003 USA Today, Researchers find monkeys know when they're getting ripped off
A (dubious) study finds that a species of monkeys has an innate sense of fairness. Perhaps the monkeys should have played an ultimatum game.
August 3, 2003 New Scientist, Biggest not always the daddy in mating game
In the evolutionary mating game, experienced partners of a number of species prefer weaker males, potentially as a signal of less abuse to come.
May 10, 2003 New Scientist, To trust is human
One researcher suggests a hormonal cause of good will in games and an inverse link between religion and altrusim. (by Ken Grimes)
December 30, 2002 University of Washington, In mutually beneficial relationship, slowest-evolving species gains upper hand
When species coevolve, the one that adapts slower effectively commits and may be better off.
December 13, 2002 University of Minnesota , Nomadism in Mongolia
Blue Jays trained to play the prisoner's dilemma appear to adopt a tit-for-tat strategy, leading to cooperation.
December 1, 2001 Discover, Why we take risks
Describes evidence of Amotz Zahavi's "handicap principle" by which risky, extravangant behaviors by many species of animals signal strength and ability.
July 16, 2001 Science Now, Autumn leaves, a secret sign?
Trees signal defenses to insects.
July 10, 2001 Nature Science Update, Trees tell pests to leaf off
Trees signal defenses to insects.
April 6, 2001 Nature, A lighter shade of egg
Laying a final pale egg deters free riding "egg dumpers" by signaling that incubation has begun.
December 16, 2000 Environmental News Network, Lizards play rock-paper-scissors in the game of life
Multiple mating strategies survive in the mixed-strategy equilibrium
December 5, 2000 Scientific American, Mating lizards play a game of rock-paper-scissors
Multiple mating strategies survive in the mixed-strategy equilibrium
August 25, 2000, To the last 'survivor'
Examines cooperation in extensive-form games on the TV show "Survivor."
July 1, 2000 Lingua Franca, Death of an altruist
Evolutionary biologist George Pierce believed in the evolution of cooperation
April 1, 1999 Nature, Phage-lift for game theory
Primitive phages, bacteria-infecting viruses, play the prisoner's dilemma on a genetic, evolutionary level.
July 1998 American Scientist, Animal contests as evolutionary games
Evolutionary game theory explains how animals react to meeting a rival from the same species face to face. (by Mike Mesterton-Gibbons and Eldridge S. Adams)
June 11, 1998 Nature, Help and you shall be helped
Can cooperation in prisoner's dilemma -type games evolve without repeated interaction, through indirect reciprocity?
1998 The Slab, Tit for Tat
Describes the use of tit for tat throughout the natural world and notes Axelrod's findings.
June 10, 1997 New York Times, Frog's Unusual Diet for a Longer Life: A Medley of Toxins
Poisonous frogs adopt different behaviors than their nonpoisonous kin, including brighter colors and dayime activity. (by Verne G. Kopytoff)