Review of Behavioral Economics > Vol 2 > Issue 1-2

Homo Socialis: An Analytical Core for Sociological Theory

Herbert Gintis, Santa Fe Institute, USA, Dirk Helbing, ETH Zürich, Switzerland,
Suggested Citation
Herbert Gintis and Dirk Helbing (2015), "Homo Socialis: An Analytical Core for Sociological Theory", Review of Behavioral Economics: Vol. 2: No. 1-2, pp 1-59.

Published: 29 Jul 2015
© 2015 H. Gintis and D. Helbing
Social theory

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Open Access

This is published under the terms of CC-BY.

In this article:
1. Introduction
2. Summary: A Core Analytical Model
3. Gene-Culture Coevolution
4. Networked Minds and Distributed Cognition
5. Socio-Psychological Theory of Norms
6. General Social Equilibrium
7. Conclusion
A1. Rational Choice with Moral Values and Character Virtues
B1. Epistemic Games and Correlated Equilibria
C1. The Evolution of Social Conventions


We develop an analytical core for sociology. We follow standard dynamical systems theory by first specifying the conditions for social equilibrium, and then studying the dynamical principles that govern disequilibrium behavior. Our general social equilibrium model is an expansion of the general equilibrium model of economic theory, and our dynamical principles treat the society as a complex adaptive system that can be studied using evolutionary game theory and agent-based Markov models based on variants of the replicator dynamic.