Send to

Choose Destination
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2017 Jun 6;114(23):6046-6051. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1620852114. Epub 2017 May 22.

Spatial evolutionary games with weak selection.

Author information

North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, Durham, NC 27705.
Math Department, Duke University, Durham NC, 27708-0320


Recently, a rigorous mathematical theory has been developed for spatial games with weak selection, i.e., when the payoff differences between strategies are small. The key to the analysis is that when space and time are suitably rescaled, the spatial model converges to the solution of a partial differential equation (PDE). This approach can be used to analyze all [Formula: see text] games, but there are a number of [Formula: see text] games for which the behavior of the limiting PDE is not known. In this paper, we give rules for determining the behavior of a large class of [Formula: see text] games and check their validity using simulation. In words, the effect of space is equivalent to making changes in the payoff matrix, and once this is done, the behavior of the spatial game can be predicted from the behavior of the replicator equation for the modified game. We say predicted here because in some cases the behavior of the spatial game is different from that of the replicator equation for the modified game. For example, if a rock-paper-scissors game has a replicator equation that spirals out to the boundary, space stabilizes the system and produces an equilibrium.


bone cancer; cancer modeling; public goods game; rock–paper–scissors

Comment in

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center