Date: 11 Feb 2003

Choice and Institutions in Agent Societies

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Abstract

In large anonymous groups, collective action may not be sustained without an ‘external’ monitoring meta-agency. But, if interactions are not anonymous, a distributed meta-agency may sustain collective action, provided that, within the group, a sufficient initial level of compliance with the shared rules exists. Given an uneven distribution of power, shared rules that are not beneficial to the group may persist. We show through simulation that these are results that may be obtained from a simple model of bounded rational choice where the agent’s action interests are balanced against higher order normative motives.