Evolved Preferences

Robin Hanson (hanson@hss.caltech.edu)
Tue, 15 Apr 1997 15:21:05 -0700 (PDT)

I wrote:
>On average though one would expect only slight risk-aversion from
>sexual reproduction, except for small genetic populations.

To be more precise: We should expect very little risk-aversion in a
large genetic population regarding idiosyncratic risk, but strong (log
utility) risk aversion regarding risks correlated across the
population. This may explain a lack of concern regarding car
accidents and heart attacks, relative to ecological collapse, war, or
a plague like AIDS. For more info see:

Arthur Robson, "A Biological Basis for Expected and Non-expected
Utility", Journal of Economic Theory, 1996 V68, pp.397-424.

Robin D. Hanson hanson@hss.caltech.edu http://hss.caltech.edu/~hanson/