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Learning to Share in Networked Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning

Yuxuan Yi · Ge Li · Yaowei Wang · Zongqing Lu

Keywords: [ Networked Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning ] [ Cooperative Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning ]


In this paper, we study the problem of networked multi-agent reinforcement learning (MARL), where a number of agents are deployed as a partially connected network and each interacts only with nearby agents. Networked MARL requires all agents to make decisions in a decentralized manner to optimize a global objective with restricted communication between neighbors over the network. Inspired by the fact that sharing plays a key role in human's learning of cooperation, we propose LToS, a hierarchically decentralized MARL framework that enables agents to learn to dynamically share reward with neighbors so as to encourage agents to cooperate on the global objective through collectives. For each agent, the high-level policy learns how to share reward with neighbors to decompose the global objective, while the low-level policy learns to optimize the local objective induced by the high-level policies in the neighborhood. The two policies form a bi-level optimization and learn alternately. We empirically demonstrate that LToS outperforms existing methods in both social dilemma and networked MARL scenarios across scales.

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