Social Dilemmas

The International Conference on Social Dilemmas (ICSD) brings together early-career and world-leading scholars on social dilemmas from all over the world. Social dilemmas are situations in which self-interest is at odds with collective interests (for more information, see https://socialdilemma.com/). Some of the most pressing issues of our times can be thought of as social dilemmas, such as mitigating climate change, reducing intergroup conflict, or curbing the spread of infectious diseases.

Researchers from various disciplines work on better understanding and solving social dilemmas, including biologists, economists, psychologists, sociologists, and many more. This includes research on the development, scope, and explanation of cooperation in humans and other species, interventions to promote prosocial behaviour, as well as its consequences for various real-life situations (e.g., climate change, intra- and intergroup conflict, interpersonal relations). The applied methods are diverse, e.g., online, lab, and field experimental studies as well as simulation studies.


ICSD is a biennial conference taking place since 1984. The last meetings have been held in Sedona/USA (2019), Taormina/Italy (2017), and Hong Kong (2015). In recent years, it has been a medium-sized event with 100-200 participants.

ICSD 2022

ICSD 2022 will be held in Copenhagen/Denmark. To foster community building, we plan to have a single-track presentation format and a dedicated social programme. Further, to encourage submissions by junior scholars, we will have reduced conference fees for junior scholars. Last but not least, we plan to organize the conference in an environmentally friendly manner (e.g., reducing CO2 emissions as much as possible).

Note on COVID-19: We are planning to have a classic ‘offline’ conference. At the moment, there are no restrictions on gathering in Denmark, and we expect travel restrictions to be discontinued by July 2022. In case there are major restrictions, ICSD 2022 will be held as a hybrid conference. The final decision of whether the conference will be held (and, if so, how) will be made in early spring 2022 (after abstract submission, but before registration).