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Cultural transmission and biological markets

Loverdo, Claude and Viciana, Hugo (2018) Cultural transmission and biological markets. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Active cultural transmission of fitness-enhancing behavior (sometimes called “teaching”) can be seen as a costly strategy: one for which its evolutionary stability poses a Darwinian puzzle. In this article, we offer a biological market model of cultural transmission that substitutes or complements existing kin selection-based proposals for the evolution of cultural capacities. We explicitly demonstrate how a biological market can account for the evolution of teaching when individual learners are the exclusive focus of social learning (such as in a fast-changing environment). We also show how this biological market can affect the dynamics of cumulative culture. The model works best when it is difficult to have access to the observation of the behavior without the help of the actor. However, in contrast to previous non-mathematical hypotheses for the evolution of teaching, we show how teaching evolves even when innovations are insufficiently opaque and therefore vulnerable to acquisition by emulators via inadvertent transmission. Furthermore, teaching in a biological market is an important precondition for enhancing individual learning abilities


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Loverdo, Claude0000-0002-0888-1717
Viciana, Hugohugo.viciana@gmail.com0000-0002-4569-3635
Keywords: Social learning ; Comparative advantage ; Teaching ; Cumulative culture ; Partner choice
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Anthropology
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Evolutionary Psychology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Depositing User: Dr. Hugo Viciana
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2018 15:18
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2018 15:18
Item ID: 15170
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Anthropology
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Evolutionary Psychology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Date: October 2018
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15170

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