Cooperation is one of the most hot topics in our present society. Better cooperation is urgently needed to solve problems in many fields, not to mention to solve conflicts where cooperation has broken down. Working together gives mutual benefits, way beyond self interests. In nature cooperation is one of the most successful evolutionary processes in the prosperity and survival of groups.
In the latest (July 2012) version of the “Scientific American” , Prof. Martin A. Nowak, mathematical biologist at Harvard, has published a very important and at the same time very readible account of the recent progress in this field of what I call “Cooperation Science”. Short summary of that article can be found at http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=why-we-help-evolution-cooperation
A few months ago Martin Nowak visited our NL Royal Academy of Science in Amsterdam where he gave a lecture, a video of which you can find the link in my blog (in the Dutch language), where I also describe the contents of his latest and already very influential book: http://broodjejaap.wordpress.com/2012/05/27/samenwerken-werkt/ My review is very much in line with the above mentioned “Scientific American” lead article. Darwin’s theory was incomplete. Nowak brought us foward: besides the two mechanisms at work according to Darwin’s theory : 1. mutations to bring diversity, 2. natural selection by survival of the best fitting to the ecology; Nowak defined 3. cooperation in groups leading to ‘group selection’ in Nature. Yes, evolution works that way !! We have to cooperate and collaborate to survive. Even trans-tribal (see my lecture for TEIMUN2015).