Anca Dragan


Inferring Rewards from Language in Context
Jessy Lin | Daniel Fried | Dan Klein | Anca Dragan
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

In classic instruction following, language like “I’d like the JetBlue flight” maps to actions (e.g., selecting that flight). However, language also conveys information about a user’s underlying reward function (e.g., a general preference for JetBlue), which can allow a model to carry out desirable actions in new contexts. We present a model that infers rewards from language pragmatically: reasoning about how speakers choose utterances not only to elicit desired actions, but also to reveal information about their preferences. On a new interactive flight–booking task with natural language, our model more accurately infers rewards and predicts optimal actions in unseen environments, in comparison to past work that first maps language to actions (instruction following) and then maps actions to rewards (inverse reinforcement learning).


Translating Neuralese
Jacob Andreas | Anca Dragan | Dan Klein
Proceedings of the 55th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Several approaches have recently been proposed for learning decentralized deep multiagent policies that coordinate via a differentiable communication channel. While these policies are effective for many tasks, interpretation of their induced communication strategies has remained a challenge. Here we propose to interpret agents’ messages by translating them. Unlike in typical machine translation problems, we have no parallel data to learn from. Instead we develop a translation model based on the insight that agent messages and natural language strings mean the same thing if they induce the same belief about the world in a listener. We present theoretical guarantees and empirical evidence that our approach preserves both the semantics and pragmatics of messages by ensuring that players communicating through a translation layer do not suffer a substantial loss in reward relative to players with a common language.