Prisoner's dilemma doesn't explain much

In Martin Peterson (ed.), The Prisoner’s Dilemma. Classic philosophical arguments. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 64-84 (2015)
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Abstract
We make the case that the Prisoner’s Dilemma, notwithstanding its fame and the quantity of intellectual resources devoted to it, has largely failed to explain any phenomena of social scientific or biological interest. In the heart of the paper we examine in detail a famous purported example of Prisoner’s Dilemma empirical success, namely Axelrod’s analysis of WWI trench warfare, and argue that this success is greatly overstated. Further, we explain why this negative verdict is likely true generally and not just in our case study. We also address some possible defenses of the Prisoner’s Dilemma.
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2015
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Archival date: 2015-11-21
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2015-01-09

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