Improving Confidence in the Estimation of Values and Norms

Autonomous agents (AA) will increasingly be interacting with us in our daily lives. While we want the benefits attached to AAs, it is essential that their behavior is aligned with our values and norms. Hence, an AA will need to estimate the values and norms of the humans it interacts with, which is not a straightforward task when solely observing an agent’s behavior. This paper analyses to what extent an AA is able to estimate the values and norms of a simulated human agent (SHA) based on its actions in the ultimatum game. We present two methods to reduce ambiguity in profiling the SHAs: one based on search space exploration and another based on counterfactual analysis. We found that both methods are able to increase the confidence in estimating human values and norms, but differ in their applicability, the latter being more efficient when the number of interactions with the agent is to be minimized. These insights are useful to improve the alignment of AAs with human values and norms.

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