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MAIA Research team

Activity reports

Overall Objectives

The objective of the MAIA MAIA stands for “MAchine Intelligente et Autonome”, that is “Autonomous and Intelligent MAchine”. team is to address foundational and engineering aspects of artificial intelligence. Within this general framework, the team investigates the design and understanding of intelligent agents In the field of artificial intelligence, an “agent” refers to an entity. which autonomously perceive and act upon an environment so as to achieve one or several goals. The MAIA group addresses the design of a single agent, a team of agents or a large number of agents. This common objective is considered from two perspectives organized around two lines of research:

The first research activity is about sequential decision making. It has been influenced by Stuart Russell who considers that an agent is rational. According to them: ”For each possible percept sequence, an ideal rational agent should do whatever action is expected to maximize its performance measure” . This view makes Markov decision processes (MDPs) and more generally sequential decision making a good candidate for building the behavior of an agent. It probably explains why MDPs have received considerable attention in recent years by the artificial intelligence (AI) community.

The second activity is about understanding and engineering reactive multi-agent systems. It is influenced by research results from the field of behavioral biology which provides key insights for understanding how intelligent and adaptive behaviors appear in natural swarm systems. This encourages us to study principles of emergent behaviors in natural systems and apply them to the design of artificial intelligent systems. Reactive multi-agent systems are good candidates for building such autonomous and adaptive systems and our work mainly focuses on better understanding how we can soundly build such systems.