This is an extract from a post on another blog. Click here for the full post. In some ways I am trying to be a farmer sharing his seed corn when I write about trust or Eko. The major difference is that Eko is just starting and has won no awards but the intent to share and see others prosper as well is strong.
In his book Games Indians Play: Why We Are the Way We Are, V. Raghunathan writes about a farmer whose corn won top awards year after year. When a reporter asked about the secret of his success, the farmer attributed it to the fact that he shared his corn with his neighbors. Why, the reporter wondered, would the farmer want to share his seed when those neighbors also competed with him for the prize? The farmerâ€™s reply was, â€œThe wind picks up pollen from the ripening corn and swirls it from field to field. If my neighbors grew inferior corn, cross-pollination would steadily degrade the quality of my corn. If I am to grow good corn, I must help my neighbors do the same.â€
That Indians often fail to act like this farmer is the principal theme of Raghunathanâ€™s book. Using examples as varied as their tendency to drive through red lights to their failure to protect the environment, Raghunathan argues that Indians often act in ways that focus on winning immediate gains at the expense of long-term benefits. What makes Raghunathanâ€™s approach unusual is that his argument isnâ€™t a moral diatribe: He employs game theory â€” a branch of mathematics â€” and related concepts, such as the prisonerâ€™s dilemma, to present his case.
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