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  • CS Colloquium: Natasha Jacques (Google Brain / UC Berkeley) - Social Reinforcement Learning

    Tue, Mar 22, 2022 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Natasha Jacques, Google Brain / UC Berkeley

    Talk Title: Social Reinforcement Learning

    Series: CS Colloquium

    Abstract: Social learning helps humans and animals rapidly adapt to new circumstances, coordinate with others, and drives the emergence of complex learned behaviors. What if it could do the same for AI? This talk describes how Social Reinforcement Learning in multi-agent and human-AI interactions can address fundamental issues in AI such as learning and generalization, while improving social abilities like coordination. I propose a unified method for improving coordination and communication based on causal social influence. I then demonstrate that multi-agent training can be a useful tool for improving learning and generalization. I present PAIRED, in which an adversary learns to construct training environments to maximize regret between a pair of learners, leading to the generation of a complex curriculum of environments. Agents trained with PAIRED generalize more than 20x better to unknown test environments. Ultimately, the goal of my research is to create intelligent agents that can assist humans with everyday tasks; this means leveraging social learning to interact effectively with humans. I show that learning from human social and affective cues scales more effectively than learning from manual feedback. However, it depends on accurate recognition of such cues. Therefore I discuss how to dramatically enhance the accuracy of affect detection models using personalized multi-task learning to account for inter-individual variability. Together, this work argues that Social RL is a valuable approach for developing more general, sophisticated, and cooperative AI, which is ultimately better able to serve human needs.

    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium

    Biography: Natasha Jaques holds a joint position as a Senior Research Scientist at Google Brain and Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Berkeley. Her research focuses on Social Reinforcement Learning in multi-agent and human-AI interactions. Natasha completed her PhD at MIT, where her thesis received the Outstanding PhD Dissertation Award from the Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing. Her work has also received Best Demo at NeurIPS, an honourable mention for Best Paper at ICML, Best of Collection in the IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, and Best Paper at the NeurIPS workshops on ML for Healthcare and Cooperative AI. She has interned at DeepMind, Google Brain, and was an OpenAI Scholars mentor. Her work has been featured in Science Magazine, Quartz, MIT Technology Review, Boston Magazine, and on CBC radio. Natasha earned her Masters degree from the University of British Columbia, and undergraduate degrees in Computer Science and Psychology from the University of Regina.

    Host: Jesse Thomason

    Location: Ronald Tutor Hall of Engineering (RTH) - 105

    Audiences: By invitation only.

    Contact: Assistant to CS chair

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