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Economics in Nature
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Book description

Since the development of game theory, the analysis of animal behaviour using the theories of economics has become a growing field of biological research in which models of games and markets play an important role. Studies of sexual selection, interspecific mutualism and intraspecific cooperation show that individuals exchange commodities to their mutual benefit; the exchange values of commodities are a source of conflict, and behavioural mechanisms such as partner choice and contest between competitors determines the composition of trading pairs or groups. These 'biological markets' can be examined to gain a better understanding of the underlying principles of evolutionary ecology. In this volume scientists from different disciplines combine insights from economics, evolutionary biology and the social sciences to look at comparative aspects of economic behaviour in humans and other animals. Aimed primarily at evolutionary biologists and anthropologists, it will also appeal to psychologists and economists interested in an evolutionary approach.


‘This book provides an excellent insight into the economics of biological markets in behavour.’

Mark Fellowes Source: Biologist

‘… an excellent book, and one that may mark an important change in the way we describe, and more importantly think about, natural systems involving partner choice.’

Tom Sherratt Source: Animal Behaviour

‘… an excellent insight into the economics of biological markets in behaviour and while mainly of interest to evolutionary ecologists and anthropologists, it deserves to be dipped into by a wider audience.’

Mark Fellowes Source: Biologist

'This book deserves to be widely read, especially by those interested in cooperative behaviour, and so should increase awareness and stimulate more applications of the market approach.'

Source: International Society for Behavioural Ecology Newsletter

‘The structure of the information presentation in the book is excellent. In addition, the authors and editors have been very successful in producing a writing style that combines the detail for specialists and the ease-of-reading necessary for the lay population. The information is not only scientifically thought-provoking but it can serve as a basis for advanced level discussion groups or seminars in behavioral science. In this sense one can only congratulate the authors and editors of the volume on their job well performed.’

Source: Ethology

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