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Games 2017, 8(4), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/g8040043

Social Preferences and Context Sensitivity

Philosophy Section, Delft University of Technology, Jaffalaan 5, 2628 BX Delft, The Netherlands
Received: 28 July 2017 / Revised: 29 September 2017 / Accepted: 6 October 2017 / Published: 13 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethics, Morality, and Game Theory)
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Abstract

This paper is a partial review of the literature on ‘social preferences'. There are empirical findings that convincingly demonstrate the existence of social preferences, but there are also studies that indicate their fragility. So how robust are social preferences, and how exactly are they context dependent? One of the most promising insights from the literature, in my view, is an equilibrium explanation of mutually referring conditional social preferences and expectations. I use this concept of equilibrium, summarized by means of a figure, to discuss a range of empirical studies. Where appropriate, I also briefly discuss a couple of insights from the (mostly parallel) evolutionary literature about cooperation. A concrete case of the Orma in Kenya will be used as a motivating example in the beginning. View Full-Text
Keywords: social preferences; game theory; ethics social preferences; game theory; ethics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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de Boer, J. Social Preferences and Context Sensitivity. Games 2017, 8, 43.

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