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Irrationality, suboptimality, and the evolutionary context

Cuthill, Innes; Steer, Mark


Innes Cuthill

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Mark Steer
Associate Professor in Conservation Biology


We propose that a direct analogy can be made between optimal behaviour in animals and rational behaviour in humans, and that lessons learned by the study of the former can be applied to the latter. Furthermore, we suggest that, to understand human decisions, rationality must be considered within an evolutionary framework.


Cuthill, I., & Steer, M. (2003). Irrationality, suboptimality, and the evolutionary context. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 26(2), 176-177.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Apr 1, 2003
Journal Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Print ISSN 0140-525X
Publisher Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 26
Issue 2
Pages 176-177
Keywords backward induction, centipede game, common knowledge, cooperation, epistemic reasoning, game theory, payoff dominance, pure coordination game, rational choice theory, social dilemma
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