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BIO312: Evolutionary Biology

Unit 3: Evolutionary Game Theory   Game Theory is a mathematic representation of inputs and responses often used in psychology to predict behavior. Game Theory can also predict coevolutionary change. In this unit, we will look at how Game Theory can be used in evolutionary biology and practice using it in hypothetical situations. The activity in this unit will involve an assignment or simulation in which you will be required to calculate inputs and responses and use those calculations to make predictions or to draw conclusions.

Unit 3 Time Advisory
Completing this unit should take you approximately 14 hours.

☐    Subunit 3.1: 3 hours

☐    Subunit 3.2: 11 hours

Unit3 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, you will be able to: - explain how game theory applies to evolutionary biology; - compare and contrast cooperative and non-cooperative games; - define the prisoner’s dilemma and give an example of this concept from evolutionary biology; - define evolutionary arms race and give an example; and - explain how the Red Queen Hypothesis relates to evolutionary biology and give an example of this.

  • Lecture: Yale University: Professor Stephen Stearns’s “Evolutionary Game Theory” Link: Yale University: Professor Stephen Stearns’s Evolutionary Game Theory (YouTube)
     
    Also available in:
    [Flash
    Quicktime
    MP3

    Transcript](http://oyc.yale.edu/ecology-and-evolutionary-biology/eeb-122/lecture-33)
     
    Instructions: This video presentation will introduce you to game theory including the Prisoners Dilemma and the Hawk-Dove game. Be sure to take notes and pay particular attention to all the terms the presenter introduces.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

3.1 Specifics of Game Theory   - Reading: Cornell University: David Easley and Jon Kleinberg’s Networks, Crowds, and Markets: “Games” Link: Cornell University: David Easley and Jon Kleinberg’s Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Games (PDF)
 
Instructions: This article is from the book Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Reasoning about a Highly Connected World. Scroll down the page and click on the link for “Chapter 6: Games” to view the PDF.

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  • Reading: Cornell University: David Easley and Jon Kleinberg Networks, Crowds, and Markets: “Evolutionary Game Theory” Link: Cornell University: David Easley and Jon Kleinberg Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Evolutionary Game Theory (PDF)
     
    Instructions: From the book Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Reasoning about a Highly Connected World. Scroll down the page and click on the link for “Chapter 7: Evolutionary Game Theory” to view the PDF. The readings are fairly detailed but will give you a good basis for understanding not only game theory but evolutionary game theory including evolutionary stable strategies.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

3.1.1 Cooperative vs. Non-Cooperative Games   - Reading: New York University: Adam Brandenberger’s “Cooperative Games” Link: New York University: Adam Brandenberger’s Cooperative Games (PDF)
 
Instructions: This reading discusses cooperative game theory along with examples and mathematical functions. Click on "Cooperative Game Theory: Characteristic Functions, Allocations, Marginal Contribution" to view the PDF. Other files on the main page above may be useful reading as well.
 
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3.1.2 Prisoner’s Dilemma   - Reading: UCLA: David Levine’s “What is Game Theory?” Link: UCLA: David Levine’s What is Game Theory? (HTML)
 
Instructions: This page provides a description of game theory and then takes you through a useful example.
 
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3.2 Applications of Game Theory in Evolutionary Biology   3.2.1 Behavior   - Reading: Stanford University: Encyclopedia of Philosophy “Applications of Evolutionary Game Theory” Link: Stanford University: Encyclopedia of Philosophy Applications of Evolutionary Game Theory (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read section four on applications of evolutionary game theory.
 
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  • Reading: Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute: West-Eberhard’s “Flexible Strategy and Social Evolution” Link: Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute: West-Eberhard’s Flexible Strategy and Social Evolution (PDF)
     
    Instructions: Download the PDF titled “Mary Jane West-Eberhard.
    1. Flexible strategy and social evolution. In Animal Societies: Theories and Facts. Y. Ito, J. L. Brown, and J. Kikkawa, eds., Japan Scientific Societies Press, Ltd., Tokyo, pp. 35–51.” Read the article and take notes. 
       
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3.2.2 Evolutionary Stable Strategy   - Reading: University of Maryland’s “Evolutionary Stable Strategies” Link: University of Maryland’s “Evolutionary Stable Strategies” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this page, which introduces evolutionary stable strategies.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use  displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: PBS: “John Maynard Smith: The Evolutionary Stable Strategy” Link: PBS: “John Maynard Smith: The Evolutionary Stable Strategy” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this page, which introduces evolutionary stable strategies, and take notes.
     
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3.2.2.1 Connection to Red Queen Hypothesis   Note: This subunit is also covered by the reading assigned beneath subunit 3.2.2. 

  • Reading: Indiana University’s “Red Queen Hypothesis” Link: Indiana University’s Red Queen Hypothesis (HTML)         

    Instructions: Read this page for an introduction to the Red Queen Hypothesis.
     
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  • Reading: Experiment-Resources’ “Red Queen Hypothesis” Link: Experiment-Resources’ Red Queen Hypothesis (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this page for examples of the Red Queen Hypothesis and how it relates to sexual reproduction and genetics. 
     
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3.2.2.2 Predator-Prey Example   - Reading: NECSI’s “Predator-Prey Relationships” Link: NECSI’s Predator-Prey Relationships (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this page for an introduction to the interactions between predators and prey.
 
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  • Reading: State University of New York Stonybrook’s Center for Game Theory in Economics: Shi Chen’s “A Game Theory Model for Predator-Prey Dynamics” Link: State University of New York Stonybrook’s Center for Game Theory in Economics: Shi Chen’s A Game Theory Model for Predator-Prey Dynamics (HTML)
     
    Instructions: This link will lead you to the home page of the Center for Game Theory in Economics. Click on the “Archives” button on the left side of the screen, and then scroll down to the “21st Summer Festival on Game Theory” and click the “View Program” link under “July 15, 2010.” Scroll down this page until you see the blue bar for “Wednesday, July 14th.” In the third column, in the “11:45–12:15” slot, you will find the link that allows you to access a PDF of this article. Please read the article to see how game theory principles affect predator-prey interactions.
     
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3.2.2.3 Host-Parasite Example   - Reading: University of Otago’s Evolutionary and Ecological Parasitology Research Group: William Vickery and Robert Poulin’s “The Evolution of Host Manipulation by Parasites: A Game Theory Analysis” Link: University of Otago’s Evolutionary and Ecological Parasitology Research Group: William Vickery and Robert Poulin’s The Evolution of Host Manipulation by Parasites: A Game Theory Analysis (HTML)

 Instructions: This link will lead to you a publications page. Click
on the “2010” link, and then scroll down until you see the bolded
reference to “Evolutionary Ecology” and click on the PDF link to
access this article. Read the article for an explanation of current
thought on how game theory may explain some host-parasite
interactions.  
    
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  • Reading: Biology Online’s “Host Parasite Co-evolution” Link: Biology Online’s “Host Parasite Co-evolution” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this webpage, which includes examples of host-parasite relationships and the relation to evolution.                                       
     
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  • Reading: PBS: “Survival: Microbe Clock” Link: PBS: Survival: Microbe Clock (Flash) 
     
    Instructions: Click on each arrow to learn how microbes can evolve very quickly. 
     
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3.2.2.4 Mutualism Example   - Reading: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: Michael Doebeli and Nancy Knowlton’s “The Evolution of Interspecific Mutualisms” Link: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: Michael Doebeli and Nancy Knowlton’s The Evolution of Interspecific Mutualisms (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this article for an explanation about how game theory may work in mutualistic interactions.
 
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3.2.3 Game Theory Activity   - Activity: NetLogo Models Library: Uri Wilensky’s “Wolf Sheep Stride Inheritance” Link: NetLogo Models Library: Uri Wilensky’s Wolf Sheep Stride Inheritance (HTML)
 
Instructions: Use this Java application to simulate evolution in a population due to pressures from predator-prey interactions. As you play around with this application, think about what you have learned about game theory and about coevolution, and how these factors can affect the evolution that occurs within a population.
 
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Unit 3 Assessment   - Assessment: The Saylor Foundation’s “Unit 3 Assessment” Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Unit 3 Assessment” (HTML)

 Instructions: Complete this assessment. The correct answers will be
displayed when you click Submit. You must be logged into your Saylor
account in order to access this exam. If you do not yet have an
account, you will be able to create one, free of charge, after
clicking the link.  
    
 You may retake the quiz as many times as you like to prepare for
the final exam. Good luck!