Volume 84, Number 5, December 2008
Article Number 50008
Number of page(s) 6
Section General
Published online 12 December 2008
EPL, 84 (2008) 50008
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/84/50008

Role of collective influence in promoting cooperation

Z.-G. Huang1, Z.-X. Wu2, A.-C. Wu1, L. Yang1, 3 and Y.-H. Wang1

1   School of Physical Science and Technology, Lanzhou University - Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China
2   Department of Physics, Umeå  University - 90187 Umeå, Sweden, EU
3   Institute of Modern Physics, Chinese Academy of Science - Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China

received 27 August 2008; accepted in final form 27 October 2008; published December 2008
published online 12 December 2008

The collective influence on the individuals' behavior have attracted much attention, and interesting phenomena such as social facilitation and social loafing have been studied. In this paper, we consider how the collective influence affects the evolution of cooperation in a structured population of individuals who nourish and benefit from public goods in groups. Individuals are supposed to distribute endowments to different groups to nourish the corresponding public goods. The collective influence is indicated by a tunable parameter $\alpha $, with larger $\alpha $ corresponding to the players' higher preference to contribute more to the larger groups, which is similar to the social-facilitation effect in the real world, whereas, with smaller $\alpha $ corresponding to individuals' contrary preference, i.e., the social-loafing effect. Interestingly, we find that the heterogeneity of public-goods setting favors cooperation. Furthermore, the system where social loafing occurs performs better than that with social facilitation, in the case of heterogeneous formation.

02.50.Le - Decision theory and game theory.
87.23.Kg - Dynamics of evolution.
87.23.Ge - Dynamics of social systems.

© EPLA 2008