Evolving Righteousness in a Corrupt World

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Evolving Righteousness in a Corrupt World

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dc.contributor.author Sadedin, Suzanne
dc.contributor.author Duenez-Guzman, Edgar
dc.date.accessioned 2012-11-01T17:10:50Z
dc.date.issued 2012
dc.identifier.citation Duéñez-Guzmán, Edgar and Suzanne Sadedin. 2012. Evolving righteousness in a corrupt world. PLoS ONE 7(9): e44432. en_US
dc.identifier.issn 1932-6203 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:9826904
dc.description.abstract Punishment offers a powerful mechanism for the maintenance of cooperation in human and animal societies, but the maintenance of costly punishment itself remains problematic. Game theory has shown that corruption, where punishers can defect without being punished themselves, may sustain cooperation. However, in many human societies and some insect ones, high levels of cooperation coexist with low levels of corruption, and such societies show greater wellbeing than societies with high corruption. Here we show that small payments from cooperators to punishers can destabilize corrupt societies and lead to the spread of punishment without corruption (righteousness). Righteousness can prevail even in the face of persistent power inequalities. The resultant righteous societies are highly stable and have higher wellbeing than corrupt ones. This result may help to explain the persistence of costly punishing behavior, and indicates that corruption is a sub-optimal tool for maintaining cooperation in human societies. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Organismic and Evolutionary Biology en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Public Library of Science en_US
dc.relation.isversionof doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0044432 en_US
dash.license OAP
dc.subject evolutionary biology en_US
dc.subject mathematics en_US
dc.subject mental health en_US
dc.title Evolving Righteousness in a Corrupt World en_US
dc.type Journal Article en_US
dc.description.version Version of Record en_US
dc.relation.journal PLoS ONE en_US
dash.depositing.author Duenez-Guzman, Edgar
dc.date.available 2012-11-01T17:10:50Z

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  • FAS Scholarly Articles [6929]
    Peer reviewed scholarly articles from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences of Harvard University

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