Emergence of social inequality in the spatial harvesting of renewable public goods

Joshi J, Brännström Å, & Dieckmann U ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7089-0393 (2020). Emergence of social inequality in the spatial harvesting of renewable public goods. PLoS Computational Biology 16 (1): 1-25. DOI:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1007483.

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Abstract

Author summary Throughout history, humans have shaped ecological landscapes, which in turn have influenced human behavior. This mutual dependence is epitomized when human consumers harvest a spatially extended renewable resource. Simple models predict that, when multiple consumers harvest a shared resource, each is tempted to harvest faster than his/her peers, putting the resource at risk of overexploitation. It is unclear, however, how the interplay among resource productivity, consumer mobility, and social learning in spatial ecological public goods games influences evolved consumer behavior. Here, using an individual-based, spatially structured, eco-evolutionary model of consumers and a resource, we find that increasing resource productivity initially promotes efficient resource use by enabling mobile consumption strategies, but eventually leads to inequality and overexploitation, as overexploitative mobile consumers coexist with frugal sedentary consumers. When consumers are impatient (i.e., eager to imitate successful strategies) or myopic (i.e., unaware of conditions outside of their neighborhoods), inequality and overexploitation tend to aggravate.

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: Evolution and Ecology (EEP)
Exploratory and Special projects (ESP)
Young Scientists Summer Program (YSSP)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 09 Jan 2020 12:41
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2020 12:41
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/16259

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