Cognitive requirements for hawk-dove games: A functional analysis for evolutionary design

Tomonori Morikawa*, James E. Hanley, John Orbell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Like other social animals, humans play adaptively important games, and current evolutionary theory predicts special-purpose, domain-specific cognitive mechanisms for playing such games. We offer a functional analysis of the information requirements for successfully playing one important social game, the "hawk-dove" conflict-of-interest game, developing new graphic conventions for doing so. In particular, we address the orders of recognition necessary for successfully playing such games, showing that there are adaptive advantages of capacities for first, second, third, and fourth such orders, but no more. We suggest that first-order recognition is not only the most basic in analytic terms but is likely to have been the first to evolve, with subsequent orders added later in evolution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-12
Number of pages10
JournalPolitics and the Life Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Mar

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Public Administration


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