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Inclusive fitness and the problem of honest communicationInclusive fitness has been under intense scrutiny in recent years, with many critics claiming the framework leads to incorrect predictions. We show that one particularly influential heuristic for estimating inclusive fitness is unreliable, yielding incorrect predictions in the very case that motivated reliance on it to begin with: communication among relatives with conflicting interests. Using a neighbor-modulated fitness model, we show when and why this heuristic fails. We do not argue that the inclusive fitness framework as a whole is problematic, but that a heavily relied on method for calculating inclusive fitness misrepresents the biological reality of interactions among kin.
Australian National University
Logic and Philosophy of Science
University of California, Irvine