Supporting Information - The supplementary material provides detail about the stability analysis of the solutions from Competing metabolic strategies in a multilevel selection model

The evolutionary mechanisms of energy efficiency have been addressed. One important question is to understand how the optimized usage of energy can be selected in an evolutionary process, especially when the immediate advantage of gathering efficient individuals in an energetic context is not clear. We propose a model of two competing metabolic strategies differing in their resource usage, an efficient strain which converts resource into energy at high efficiency but displays a low rate of resource consumption, and an inefficient strain which consumes resource at a high rate but at low yield. We explore the dynamics in both well-mixed and structured populations. The selection for optimized energy usage is measured by the likelihood of that an efficient strain can invade a population of inefficient strains. It is found that the parameter space at which the efficient strain can thrive in structured populations is always broader than observed in well-mixed populations.