Cooperative Equilibria in Iterated Social Dilemmas

  • Valerio Capraro
  • Matteo Venanzi
  • Maria Polukarov
  • Nicholas R. Jennings
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8146)


The implausibility of the extreme rationality assumptions of Nash equilibrium has been attested by numerous experimental studies with human players. In particular, the fundamental social dilemmas such as the Traveler’s dilemma, the Prisoner’s dilemma, and the Public Goods game demonstrate high rates of deviation from the unique Nash equilibrium, dependent on the game parameters or the environment in which the game is played. These results inspired several attempts to develop suitable solution concepts to more accurately explain human behaviour. In this line, the recently proposed notion of cooperative equilibrium [5, 6], based on the idea that players have a natural attitude to cooperation, has shown promising results for single-shot games. In this paper, we extend this approach to iterated settings. Specifically, we define the Iterated Cooperative Equilibrium (ICE) and show it makes statistically precise predictions of population average behaviour in the aforementioned domains. Importantly, the definition of ICE does not involve any free parameters, and so it is fully predictive.


Nash Equilibrium Social Dilemma Public Good Game Normal Form Game Unique Nash Equilibrium 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Valerio Capraro
    • 1
  • Matteo Venanzi
    • 2
  • Maria Polukarov
    • 2
  • Nicholas R. Jennings
    • 2
  1. 1.MathematicsUniversity of SouthamptonUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.Electronics and Computer ScienceUniversity of SouthamptonUnited Kingdom

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