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Replicable Reinforcement Learning

Eric Eaton · Marcel Hussing · Michael Kearns · Jessica Sorrell

Great Hall & Hall B1+B2 (level 1) #1823


The replicability crisis in the social, behavioral, and data sciences has led to the formulation of algorithm frameworks for replicability --- i.e., a requirement that an algorithm produce identical outputs (with high probability) when run on two different samples from the same underlying distribution. While still in its infancy, provably replicable algorithms have been developed for many fundamental tasks in machine learning and statistics, including statistical query learning, the heavy hitters problem, and distribution testing. In this work we initiate the study of replicable reinforcement learning, providing a provably replicable algorithm for parallel value iteration, and a provably replicable version of R-Max in the episodic setting. These are the first formal replicability results for control problems, which present different challenges for replication than batch learning settings.

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