This chapter contains an extensive discussion of cooperation, including accounts of both I-mode and we-mode cooperation. I-mode cooperation concerns the participants relevantly “shifting” their I-mode goals and actions toward their partnersʼ goals and actions so that a shared goal outcome is reached. We-mode cooperation amounts to we-mode joint action. These two modes are compared and illustrated in terms of a simple game-theoretical public good acquisition model. It is shown that in some situations we-mode cooperation is preferable to both “progroup” and “plain” I-mode cooperation also on grounds of instrumental rationality. We-mode cooperation, by generally being more holistic and ingrained, gives more stability and order, involves respect-based trust, and also allows for more speed, creativity, and flexibility and better applicability to the large-group case. Because of the ingredient of collective commitment we-mode cooperation entails “strong,” group-sanctioned reciprocity, which helps to escape collective action dilemmas. From the group's point of view such dilemmas ideally do not even arise, although in real life people often do not act as proper group members but free-ride.
Keywords: assurance game, collective action dilemma, cooperation, group utility, I-mode cooperation, prisoner's dilemma, progroup I-mode cooperation, strong reciprocity, utility transformation, we-mode cooperation
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