Understanding the social dynamics that cause cooperation to thrive, or fail

In a new report in the journal Nature Communications, Erol Akçay, a biologist at the University of Pennsylvania, addresses the question of how an evolving social network influences the likelihood of cooperation in a theoretical social group. He finds that, although networks where connected individuals are closely related are more likely to cooperate, such groups can trigger a feedback loop that alters the structure of the network and leads to cooperation’s collapse.

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