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Safety Aware Reinforcement Learning (SARL)
Santiago Miret

As reinforcement learning agents become increasingly integrated into complex, real-world environments, designing for safety becomes a critical consideration. We introduce Safety Aware Reinforcement Learning (SARL) - a framework where a virtual safe agent modulates the actions of a main reward-based agent to minimize side effects. Here, a safe agent learns a task-independent notion of safety for a given environment. The main agent is then trained with a regularization loss given by the distance between the native action probabilities of the two agents, allowing us to learn a task-independent notion of safety. This notion can then be ported to modulate multiple policies solving different tasks within the given environment without further training. We contrast this with solutions that rely on task-specific regularization metrics and test our framework on the SafeLife Suite, based on Conway's Game of Life, comprising a number of complex tasks in dynamic environments.

Author Information

Santiago Miret (Intel AI Lab)

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