From extortion to generosity, evolution in the Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma
Alexander J. Stewart and Joshua B. Plotkin (2013) “From extortion to generosity, evolution in the Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110:38, 15348-15353.
Summarized Abstract: Recent work has revealed a new class of “zero-determinant” (ZD) strategies for iterated, two-player games. ZD strategies allow a player to unilaterally enforce a linear relationship between her score and her opponent’s score, and thus to achieve an unusual degree of control over both players’ long-term payoffs. Nevertheless, we identify a different subset of ZD strategies, called “generous ZD strategies,” that forgive defecting opponents but nonetheless dominate in evolving populations. Generous strategies can be generalized beyond the space of ZD strategies, and they remain robust to invasion. When evolution occurs on the full set of all IPD strategies, selection disproportionately favors these generous strategies. In some regimes, generous strategies outperform even the most successful of the well-known IPD strategies, including win-stay-lose-shift.
Concentrating on Kindness
Kai Kupferschmidt (2013) “Concentrating on Kindness,” Science, 341:6152, 1336-1339.
Abstract: Neuroscientist Tania Singer, a director at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, has embarked on an ambitious study involving 160 participants to find out whether meditation can make people more compassionate. Meditation research does not have a very rigorous reputation, and some scientists are skeptical about the work, but Singer—who has long practiced meditation herself—hopes her study will be methodologically rigorous enough to withstand criticism. By increasing compassion, she hopes her research will contribute to a better world.
Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself: Self-Compassion Facilitates Creative Originality Among Self-Judgmental Individuals
Zabelina, Darya L. and Robinson, Michael D. (2010) “Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself: Self-Compassion Facilitates Creative Originality Among Self-Judgmental Individuals,” Creativity Research Journal, 22:3, 288-293.
Summarized Abstract: Self-compassion is a multifaceted state of potential utility in alleviating the self-critical tendencies that may undermine creative expressions among certain individuals…Self-judgmental individuals displayed lower levels of creative originality in the control condition, but equal levels of creative originality in the self-compassion condition. Results are discussed in the context of theories of creative potential, self-compassion, and chronic tendencies toward self-criticism.