Internally Rewarded Reinforcement Learning

Published: 24 Apr 2023, Last Modified: 15 Jun 2023ICML 2023 PosterEveryoneRevisions
Abstract: We study a class of reinforcement learning problems where the reward signals for policy learning are generated by a discriminator that is dependent on and jointly optimized with the policy. This interdependence between the policy and the discriminator leads to an unstable learning process because reward signals from an immature discriminator are noisy and impede policy learning, and conversely, an under-optimized policy impedes discriminator learning. We call this learning setting $\textit{Internally Rewarded Reinforcement Learning}$ (IRRL) as the reward is not provided directly by the environment but $\textit{internally}$ by the discriminator. In this paper, we formally formulate IRRL and present a class of problems that belong to IRRL. We theoretically derive and empirically analyze the effect of the reward function in IRRL and based on these analyses propose the clipped linear reward function. Experimental results show that the proposed reward function can consistently stabilize the training process by reducing the impact of reward noise, which leads to faster convergence and higher performance compared with baselines in diverse tasks.
Submission Number: 6561