Exploration and Communication for Partially Observable Collaborative Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning


Multi-agent reinforcement learning (MARL) enables us to create adaptive agents in challenging environments, even when the agents have limited observation. The cooperative multi-agent setting introduces numerous challenges compared to the single-agent setting, such as the moving target problem and the curse of dimensionality with respect to the action space. It also aggravates the credit assignment problem, as the credit is not only spread across a sequence of actions, but also multiple agents. This setting also introduces new possibilities, such as task parallelization, specialization, and communication. The Centralized Training with Decentralized Execution paradigm has emerged as a popular strategy to mitigate some of the difficulties in MARL, while still ensuring that the policy of the agents is only conditioned on their local history. However, how to fully leverage this paradigm is still an open question. During the first year of my Ph.D., I developed a novel algorithm, Local Advantage Networks (LAN), that proposes an alternative direction to value factorization, that is more scalable, not limited in its representation and state-of-the-art. The next parts of my research will focus on multi-agent exploration and learning to communicate.

At the 21st International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems.
Raphael Avalos
Raphael Avalos
PhD Candidate

PhD candidate in Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning.