Understanding and maximizing the effects of heterogeneous investment, particularly in a socially diverse society, on the evolution of cooperation have been the focus of recent research. In the most existing studies, individuals are limited to make binary decisions (i.e., either cooperate or defect). This is unrealistic in many real-world situations. In this paper, we investigate the effect of a heterogeneous investment on the evolution of cooperation in mixed strategy public goods games, wherein individuals have different probability of cooperation. Specifically, players are able to distribute heterogeneous investments into different groups, and they tend to allocate their investment into the group which achieves a higher return on investment (e.g., payoffs). Simulation results show that the formation of cooperative clusters allows cooperative players to resist the exploitation of defective players; subsequently, the cooperation level of the whole population significantly increases. Moreover, the results also show that cooperative clusters become more robust when the investment redistribution decision relies on more recent information. Our study may offer new insights into how strategy diversity promotes the evolutionary of cooperation in realistic situations.
Spatial public goods game Mixed strategy Heterogeneous investment
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Authors like to appreciate the anonymous referees for their valuable comments and suggestions. This work is supported by the National Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 61100194, 61402141, 61100039, 61272173 and 61403059) and the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (Grant No. BK20131277).
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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