Rock-Paper-Scissors, Differential Games and Biological Diversity

10/30/2017 ∙ by Tung Mai, et al. ∙ 0

We model a situation in which a collection of species derive their fitnesses via a rock-paper-scissors-type game; however, the precise payoffs are a function of the environment. The new aspect of our model lies in adding a feedback loop: the environment changes according to the relative fitnesses of the species; in particular, it gives a boost to the species having small populations. We cast our model in the setting of a differential game and we show that for a certain setting of parameters, this dynamics cycles. Our model is a natural one, since depletion of resources used by more frequent species will shift the payoff matrix towards favoring less frequent ones. Since the dynamics cycles, no species goes extinct and diversity is maintained.

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