Evolutionary Dynamics of Technology Adoption Coordination and the Application of Commitment

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


In the context of social dilemmas, it has been demonstrated that establishing pre-commitments
Of future actions is an evolutionary viable mechanism, ensuring high levels of mutual
Cooperation among self-interested individuals. Coordination is one of the numerous group
Behaviours that can be accomplished through pre-commitments. There may be multiple
Desirable collective outcomes and players might have distinct, incompatible preferences in
Terms of which outcome should be agreed upon, thus leading to a larger behavioural space,
Making coordination difficult to attain.
In this thesis, we develop mathematical and computational formulations to explore the
Evolutionary dynamics of technology adoption decision making and competition amongst
Firms. Using methods from Evolutionary Game Theory (EGT), we first explored how
Pre-commitments can be adopted as a tool for enhancing coordination when its outcomes
Exhibit an asymmetric payoff structure, in pairwise interaction and thereafter expanded the
Interaction to accommodate a multiplayer interaction. We further explored how to resolve
Difficult coordination when there is a need for a group mixture or diversity of group choices.
We then extend our study from the well-mixed population to spatial networked population
Settings, to investigate the impact of different population structures including square lattice
And scale-free (SF) networks on our technology adoption model.
We find, through an in-depth mathematical analysis and comprehensive numerical simulation,
That pre-commitment would be a viable evolutionary mechanism for enhancing
Coordination and the overall population social welfare but this strongly depends on (i) the
Collective benefit of coordination, (ii) how asymmetric benefits are resolved in a commitment
Deal, (iii) severity of competition and (iv) the cost of arranging a pre-commitment in relation
To the benefit derived from coordinating the interactions. Additionally, results from our
Multiplayer interactions show that pre-commitments prove to be crucial when a high level
Of group diversity is required for optimal coordination. The results are robust for different
Selection intensities.
Similarly to well-mixed analyses, our study of different network settings has shown
That pre-commitments enhance coordination and the overall population payoff in structured
Populations, especially when the cost of commitment is justified against the benefit of coordination, and when the technology market is highly competitive. When commitments
Are absent, slightly higher levels of coordination and population welfare are obtained in SF
Than lattice. In the presence of commitments and when the market is very competitive, the
Overall population welfare is similar in both lattice and heterogeneous networks; though
It is slightly lower in SF when the market competition is low. Overall, we observe that
Commitments can improve coordination and population welfare in both well-mixed and
Structured populations. The outcome of evolutionary dynamics is, interestingly, not sensitive
To changes in the network structure.
Overall, the analyses and findings from this thesis provide new insights into the complexity
And beauty of behavioral evolution driven by humans’ capacity for commitment, as
Well as for the design of self-organised and distributed multi-agent systems for ensuring
Coordination among autonomous agents.
Date of Award2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Teesside University
SupervisorThe Anh Han (Supervisor)

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