Conventional Semantic Meaning in Signalling Games with Conflicting Interests

British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (4):751-773 (2015)
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Lewis signalling games are often used to explain how it is possible for simple agents to develop systems of conventional semantic meaning. In these games, all players obtain identical payoffs in every outcome. This is an unrealistic payoff structure, but it is often employed because it is thought that semantic meaning will not emerge if interests conflict. Here it is shown that not only is conventional meaning possible when interests conflict, but it is the most likely outcome in a finite population model of learning known as the Moran process. On the basis of this result it is suggested that evolutionary game theory’s standard models may yield results that are systematically distorted for a class of signalling games that have the abstract structure of social dilemmas. 1 Introduction2 The Seduction Game3 Imitation Dynamics with Small Mutations4 Dynamics with Unverifiable Message5 Analysis of a Related Three-Strategy Game6 Conclusion



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References found in this work

Convention: A Philosophical Study.David K. Lewis - 1971 - Philosophy and Rhetoric 4 (2):137-138.
Pushmi-Pullyu Representations.Ruth Garrett Millikan - 1995 - Philosophical Perspectives 9:185-200.
Signals.Brian Skyrms - 2008 - Philosophy of Science 75 (5):489-500.
Convention: A Philosophical Study. [REVIEW]J. E. Llewelyn - 1970 - Philosophical Quarterly 20 (80):286-287.
Deterministic Chaos and the Evolution of Meaning.Elliott O. Wagner - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (3):547-575.

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