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      Do social networks of female northern long-eared bats vary with reproductive period and age?

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          A simple rule for the evolution of cooperation on graphs and social networks.

          A fundamental aspect of all biological systems is cooperation. Cooperative interactions are required for many levels of biological organization ranging from single cells to groups of animals. Human society is based to a large extent on mechanisms that promote cooperation. It is well known that in unstructured populations, natural selection favours defectors over cooperators. There is much current interest, however, in studying evolutionary games in structured populations and on graphs. These efforts recognize the fact that who-meets-whom is not random, but determined by spatial relationships or social networks. Here we describe a surprisingly simple rule that is a good approximation for all graphs that we have analysed, including cycles, spatial lattices, random regular graphs, random graphs and scale-free networks: natural selection favours cooperation, if the benefit of the altruistic act, b, divided by the cost, c, exceeds the average number of neighbours, k, which means b/c > k. In this case, cooperation can evolve as a consequence of 'social viscosity' even in the absence of reputation effects or strategic complexity.
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            Consensus decision making in animals.

            Individual animals routinely face decisions that are crucial to their fitness. In social species, however, many of these decisions need to be made jointly with other group members because the group will split apart unless a consensus is reached. Here, we review empirical and theoretical studies of consensus decision making, and place them in a coherent framework. In particular, we classify consensus decisions according to the degree to which they involve conflict of interest between group members, and whether they involve either local or global communication; we ask, for different categories of consensus decision, who makes the decision, what are the underlying mechanisms, and what are the functional consequences. We conclude that consensus decision making is common in non-human animals, and that cooperation between group members in the decision-making process is likely to be the norm, even when the decision involves significant conflict of interest.
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              Social network analysis of animal behaviour: a promising tool for the study of sociality

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
                Behav Ecol Sociobiol
                Springer Nature
                0340-5443
                1432-0762
                May 2010
                February 2010
                : 64
                : 6
                : 899-913
                Article
                10.1007/s00265-010-0905-4
                3dbcabd6-da86-4e7e-a98c-227b662dc7aa
                © 2010
                History

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