Co-evolution of Behaviors and Institutions

Convener: Samuel Bowles in collaboration with Larry Blume, Robert Boyd, Herbert  Gintis and Peyton Young

Link to Agenda for 2018 Meeting

Some of the 2018 working group participants (and a future participant) hit the trail

2012 participants. Photograph: Laura Ware

2009 participants

Participants 2015 

Erol Akcay (Biology, University of Pennsylvania)
Lawrence Blume (Economics, Cornell University)
Amy Bogaard (Archaeology, University of Oxford)
Rob Boyd (Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University)
Arun Chandrasekhar (Economics, University of Stanford)
Bernard Crespi (Biosciences, Simon Fraser University)
Mattia Fochesato (Economics, University of Siena)
Herb Gintis (Central European University)
Matthew Koehler (The MITRE Corporation)
Branko Milanovic (Economics, City University of New York)
Raul Sanchez de la Sierra (Harvard University)
Daniel Trefler (University of Toronto and CIFAR)
Peyton Young (Economics, University of Oxford)

2015 Meeting Agenda

Papers Presented 2015
“Darwin’s Pin Factory: Evolutionary-Economic Convergences between Humans and Social Insects, by Richard D. Alexander and William D. Hamilton
“Origins of Europe North-South Divide: Demographic shocks, institutions and wage divergence in early modern Europe,” by Mattia Fochesato
“Trends in global income inequality and their political implications,” by Branko Milanovic
Map – “Growing inter-country income differences and migration: Key seven borders today” by Branko Milanovic
“Biological institutions: an institutional perspective on biological cooperation” by Erol Akcay
“International trade and institutional change: Medieval Venicce’s response to globalization,” by Diego Puga and Daniel Trefler
“The Diffusion of a Social Innovation: Executive Stock Options 1936-2005” by Lucas M. Brown and H. Peyton Young

Participants 2014 

Diego Gambetta (Sociology, University of Oxford)
Pauline Grosjean (Economics, University of New South Wales)
Kim Hill (Anthropology, ASU)
Curtis Marean (Archaeology, ASU)
Suresh Naidu (Economics Columbia)
Amanda Lea Robinson (Political Science, Ohio State University)
Walter Scheidel (Classics, Stanford)

Papers Presented 2014
“A Trap for Social Inclusion: Prejudice, Oligarchy, and Rivalry,” by Leonardo Boncinelli and Simone D’Alessandro
Zoon Politicon: The Evolutionary Roots of Human Sociopolitical Systems, by Herbert Gintis and Carel van Schaik
State Development and Violence: The Culture of Honor in the South; The Homicide Resource Curse, by Pauline Grosjean
The Transition to Specialized Decision Making, by Kim Hill
Coastal Foragers and the Origins of Modern Human Behavior, by Curtis W. Marean
The Geography of Ethnic Diversity: Origins and Implications in Sub-Saharan Africa, by Amanda Lea Robinson
Unmaking Inequality: A History of Violence, by Walter Scheidel

Background Papers 2014
“The behavioral foundations of the Italian North-South divide,” by Diego Gambetta
“The origin of specialized decision making in human society,” by Kim Hill
Coastal South Africa and the Coevolution of the Modern Human Lineage and the Coastal Adaptation, by Curtis Marean
The Origins and Significance of Coastal Resource use in Africa and Western Eurasia, by Curtis Marean
“Rule of Law, Riches, and Rogues: a new perspective on the resource curse,” by Pauline Grosjean
Internal Borders: Ethnic Diversity and Markeet Segmentation in Malawi, by Amanda Lea Robinson
Ethnic Diversity, Segregation, and Ethnocentric Trust in Africa, by Amanda Lea Robinson
Nationalism and Interethnic Trust: Evidence from an African Border Region, by Amanda Lea Robinson
Geographic axes and the persistence of cultural diversity, by David D. Laitin, Joachim Moortgat, and Amanda Lea Robinson
“Contested property: fugitive slaves in the Antebellum Southy,” by Suresh Naidu and Jeremiah Dittmar

Participants 2012 

Bob Allen (Economic History, Oxford)
Ingvild Almas (Norwegian School of Economics, Bergen)
Mahzarin Banaji (Psychology, Harvard)
Robert Boyd (Anthropology, UCLA)
Herbert Gintis (Econmomics, Central European University, Budapest)
Avner Greif (Economic History, Stanford)
Matthew O. Jackson (Economics, Stanford)
Ugo Pagano (Economics, Siena)
Liz Phelps (Neuroscience, NYU)
Rebecca Saxe (Neuroscience, MIT)
H. Peyton Young (Economics, University of Oxford)
Bruce Winterhalder (Archaeology, UC Davis)

Background Papers 2012
Fairness and the Development of Inequality Acceptance, by Ingvild Almas, Alexander W. Cappelen, Erik O. Sorensen, and Bertil Tungodden
Explaining Gender Differences in Competitiveness, by Ingvild Almas, Alexander W. Cappelen, Kjell G. Salvanes, Erik O. Sorensen, and Bertil Tungodden
Two Signatures of the Development of Implicit Intergroup Attitudes: Developmental Invariance and Early Enculturation, by Yarrow Dunham, Eva E. Chen, and Mahzarin R. Banaji
International Trade, Factor Mobility and the Persisstence of Cultural-Institutional Diversity, by Marianna Belloc and Samuel Bowles
Human Evolution: A Behavioral Synthesis, by Herbert Gintis
The Clan and the City: Sustaining Cooperation in China and Europe, by Avner Grief and Guido Tabellini
Cultural and Instutional Bifurcation: China and Europe Compared, by Avner Grief and Guido Tabellini
The Puzzle of Monogamous Marriage, by Joseph Henrich, Robert Boyd, and Peter J. Richerson
Social Capital and Social Quilts: Network Patterns of Favor Exchange, by Matthew O. Jackson, Tomas Rodriguez-Barraquer, and Xu Tan
Fast Convergence in Evolutionary Equilibrium Selection, by Gabriel E. Kreindler and H. Peyton Young
Love, War and Cultures: An Institutional Approach to Human Evolution, by Ugo Pagano
Interlocking Complementarities and Institutional Change, by Ugo Pagano
An Ecological Model for the Emergence of Instutionalized Social Hierarchies on California’s Northern Channel Islands, by Douglas J. Kennett, Bruce Winterhalder, Jacob Bartruff, and Jon M. Erlandson
(The Kennett et al 2009 paper is the shorter and more general background paper for my presentation.  For those wishing greater thoroughness and depth, Winterhalder et al 2010 develops the argument with greater empirical and statistical resources.  I will summarize the 2010 results briefly at the beginning of my presentation.)
Ideal Free Settlement of California’s Northern Channel Islands, by Bruce Winterhalder, Douglas J. Kennett, Mark N. Grote, and Jacob Bartruff

Program 2011 

Background Papers 2011
The Origins of Gender Roles: Women and the Plough (Prelliminary), by Alberto Alesina, Paola Giuliano, and Nathan Nunn
Coups, Corporations, and Classified Information, by Arindrajit Dube, Ethan Kaplan, and Suresh Naidu
The Inefficiency of Exchange and the Liberal Trinity, by Samuel Bowles
Was There Ever A Ruling Class? 1,000 Years of Social Mobility, by Gregory Clark
Climate Policy and Innovation in the Absence of Commitment, by Ashokankur Datta and E. Somanathan
Evolution of Monogamous Marraige by Maximization of Inclusive Fitness, by Laura Fortunato and Marco Archetti
Evolution of Monogamous Marraige by Maximization of Inclusive Fitness (Supporting Information), by Laura Fortunato and Marco Archetti
Are Incentives Overused in Cases Where They Crowd Out Pro-social Motivations?,” by Sung-Ha Hwang and Samuel Bowles
Occupational Choices: Economic Determinants of Land Invasions,” by F. Daniel Hidalgo, Suresh Naidu, Simeon Nichter, and Neal Richardson
Intergenerational Justice when Future Worlds are Uncertain,” by Humberto Llavador, John E. Roemer, and Joaquim Silvestre
How Green Was My Valley? Coercive Contract Enforcement in the 19th Century Industrial Britain,” by Suresh Naidu and Noam Yuchtman
Veblen Effects, Political Representation, and the Reduction in Working Time over The 20th Century,” by Seung-Yun Oh, Yongjin Park, and Samuel Bowles
Parental Investment, Sexual Selection and Sex Ratios,” by Hanna Kokko and Michael D. Jennions
Power and Conflict in the Contested Commons: A Model and Applicatioon to Uluabat Lake, Turkey,” by Ceren I. Soylu
The Dynamics of Social Innovation,” by H. Peyton Young

Presentations 2010
Michele Boldrin, (Economics, Washington University, St. Louis) “Ending Intellectual Monopoly.”
Sam Bowles, (Behavioral Sciences, SFI) “Is Liberal Society a Parasite on Tradition?”
Charles Efferson, (Institute for Empirical Research in Economics and the Laboratory for the Study of Social and Neural Systems, U of Zurich) “The Ultimate Origins of Human Pro-Social Behavior: An Empirical Test.”
Edoardo Gallo, (Economics, Oxford) “Bargaining and Social Structure.”
Michele A. Klein and Robert Boyd (Anthropology, UCLA) “Technological Progress as Cultural Adaptation: Demographic Influences on Tool Complexity in Oceania.”
Glenn Loury, (Economics, Brown) “Stereotypes and Inequality.”
Sarah Mathew, (Anthropology, UCLA) “The Collective Action Problem in Pre-state Warfare.”
John Mikhail, (Philosophy and Law, Georgetown) “Elements of Moral Cognition.”
Rajiv Sethi, (Economics, Columbia University)  either “Homicide in Black and White” or “Caste Hierarchies and Social Mobility in India” (to be determined).

Background Papers 2010
Heterogeneity, Selection and Wealth Dynamics,” by Lawrence Blume and David Easley
Intellectual Monopoly,” by Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine
Quality Ladders, Competition and Endogenousn Growth,” by Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine
Is Liberal Society a Parasite on Tradition?,” by Samuel Bowles
Machiavelli’s Mistake: Why Good Laws are no Substitute for Good Citizens,” by Samuel Bowles
Gaming Performance Fees by Portfolio Managers,” by Dean P. Foster and H. Peyton Young
Bargaining and Social Structure,” by Edoardo Gallo
Towards a Renaissance of Economic Theory,” by Herbert Gintis
Population Size Predicts Technological Complexity in Oceania,” by Michelle A. Kline and Robert Boyd (
An Economic Analysis of Color-Blind Affirmative Action,” by Roland G. Fryer, Jr. and Glenn C. Loury
Valuing Identity: The Simple Economics of Affirmative Action Policies,” by Roland G. Fryer, Jr. and Glenn C. Loury
Moral Grammar and Intuitive Jurisprudence: A Formal Model of Unconscious Moral and Legal Knowledge,” by John Mikhail
Universal Moral Grammar: Theory, Evidence and the Future,” by John Mikhail
Homicide in Black and White,” by Brendan O’Flaherty and Rajiv Sethi
The Scope of Cooperation: Values and Incentives,” by Guido Tabellini
Institutions and Culture,” by Guido Tabellini

Presentations 2009
Ray Jackendoff, (Philosophy and Cognitive Sciences, Tufts) “The cognitive structure of values, fairness, and reciprocity”
Jean-Paul Carvalho, (Economics,  Oxford) “A Theory of the Islamic Revival”
Peter Lindert, (Economics, UC. Davis) “Ancient inequality”
Abigail Barr, (Economics, Oxford) “Homo Aegualis: Cross cultural experimental evidence of inequality aversion”
Annie Bissonnette, (Anthropological Institute of the University of Zurich) “Leveling coalitions in non human primates”
Rob Boyd, (Anthropology, UCLA)  “The division of labor and the  origins inequality”
Linda Vigilant and Kevin Langergraber, (Primatology Department, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology) “Evolutionary effects of group competition among Chimpanzees”
Yochai Benkler, (Harvard Law School) “Policy-design when preferences depend on incentives”
Sam Bowles, (Behavioral Science, SFI) “The nature of wealth and the dynamics of inequality” (research with Monique Borgerhoff Mulder and 21others)

Selected papers presented 2000-2009.

Background Papers 2009
Homo AEqualis: A Cross-Society Experimental Analysis of Three Gargaining Games, by Abigail Barr, Chris Wallace, Jean Ensminger, Joseph Henrich, Clark Barrett, Alexander Bolyanatz, Juan Camilo Cardenas, Michael Gurven, Edwins Gwako, Carolyn Lesorogol, Frank Marlowe, Richard McElreath, David Tracer, and John Ziker
Ancient Inequality,” by Branko Milanovic, Peter H. Lindert, and Jeffrey G. Williamson
A Theory of the Islamic Revival,” by Jean-Paul Carvalho
The Peculiar Logic of Value,” by Ray Jackendoff
Group Competition, Reproductive Leveling, and the Evolution of Human Altruism,” by Samuel Bowles
Division of Labor, Economic Specializatioon, and the Evolution of Social Stratification,” by Joseph Henrich and Robert Boyd
Conflict and Cooperation in Wild Chimpanzees,” by Martin N. Muller and John C. Mitani
Law, Policy, and Cooperation,” by Yochai Benkler
Toward a General Model for Male-Male Coalitions in Primate Groups,” by Carel P. van Schaik, Sagar A. Pandit, and Erin R. Vogel
The Tax Evasion Social Multiplier: Evidence from Italy,” by Roberto Galbiati and Giulio Zanella