Third Party Punishment

Chakraborty, Saptarshi (2019) Third Party Punishment. Masters thesis, Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Kolkata.

[img] PDF (MS dissertation of Saptarshi Chakraborty (14MS095))
14MS095.pdf - Submitted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (306kB)
Official URL:


In human and many other animal societies we observe that a level of co-operation is present in the behaviours between most individuals. However a simple Prisoner’s Dilemma game suggests that the logical action to be pursued by each participant in a one-time anonymous interaction to have a maximum probability of benefit for each participant would be defection. Therefore there is an evolutionary puzzle regarding the origin of such widespread co-operative behaviour. Many solutions to this problem have been proposed. Most include punishment(subtraction of pay-off) to the defectors and/or help(addition of pay-off) to the co-operators. However the act of punishment/help require spending of added resources and thus costs additional pay-off on the part of the individuals doing it. This added cost pose a disadvantage to the punishers/helpers compared to the individuals that did not engage in punishing/helping others. So, a new problem arises: how did punishment/helping behaviour evolve if it is disadvantageous for the ones showing it ? Several answers to this question has been posed. Most of these rely on the punisher/helper showing these behaviours towards the target individuals within specific ranges of certain values such as penalty, cost of punishment, cost to benefit ratio of co-operation etc. and/or special settings such as group selection, Public Goods Game etc. All of these solutions however are applicable in very constrained environments and thus have low viability in an environment where the values of the relevant constants can wildly vary. The solution via Third Party Punishment however suffers less from this drawback. We discuss this solution in this article.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information: Supervisor: Prof. Supratim Sengupta
Uncontrolled Keywords: Co-operative Behaviour; Prisoner’s Dilemma Game; Third-Party Punishment
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Department of Physical Sciences
Depositing User: IISER Kolkata Librarian
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2020 11:34
Last Modified: 13 Feb 2020 11:34

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item