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Self-policing through norm internalization: a cognitive solution to the tragedy of the digital commons in social networks

AuthorsVillatoro, Daniel; Andrighetto, Giulia; Conte, Rosaria; Sabater-Mir, Jordi
KeywordsArtificial social systems
Cognitive modelling
Emergent behavior
Issue DateMar-2015
PublisherUniversity of Surrey
CitationJournal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation ,18 (2) 2: 1-28, 2015
AbstractIn the seminal work 'An Evolutionary Approach to Norms', Axelrod identified internalization as one of the key mechanisms that supports the spreading and stabilization of norms. But how does this process work? This paper advocates a rich cognitive model of different types, degrees and factors of norm internalization. Rather than a none-or-all phenomenon, we claim that norm internalization is a dynamic process, whose deepest step occurs when norms are complied with thoughtlessly. In order to implement a theoretical model of internalization and check its effectiveness in sustaining social norms and promoting cooperation, a simulated web-service distributed market has been designed, where both services and agents' tasks are dynamically assigned. Internalizers are compared with agents whose behaviour is driven only by self-interested motivations. Simulation findings show that in dynamic unpredictable scenarios, internalizers prove more adaptive and achieve higher level of cooperation than agents whose decision-making is based only on utility calculation. © JASSS.
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