Evolution of Cooperation

How does a two-level population model help explain the effect of group dynamics on the evolution of cooperation?

I began graduate school in the summer of 2014 as a summer graduate research assistant. I approached Dr. Burt Simon to learn about his research as I was casually walking around the department while working on the LAPACK project. His research was concerned with modeling population dynamics to study the conditions under which cooperation could evolve from a mutation to the norm within a system that is inherently competitive.

I was really interested in the problem he was working on and asked if I could see his software. I very quickly managed to increase the speed at which it ran by several orders of magnitude, and opened up a new world of possibilities to explore angles on the questions he was asking through numerical simulations. I ended up co-authoring a paper with him, and while I never presented this work, I didn’t publish the code here.

You can find more information about the article, including links to code, pdf, and the co-author’s website on the publication page.

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Michael Pilosov
(applied) math nerd on a mission.
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