Stochastic Pairwise Preference Convergence in Bayesian Agents

Jordan T Kemp, Max-Olivier Hongler, Olivier Gallay
Nonlinear Sciences, Adaptation and Self-Organizing Systems, Adaptation and Self-Organizing Systems (nlin.AO), Physics and Society (physics.soc-ph)
2023-11-05 16:00:00
Beliefs inform the behavior of forward-thinking agents in complex environments. Recently, sequential Bayesian inference has emerged as a mechanism to study belief formation among agents adapting to dynamical conditions. However, we lack critical theory to explain how preferences evolve in cases of simple agent interactions. In this paper, we derive a Gaussian, pairwise agent interaction model to study how preferences converge when driven by observation of each other's behaviors. We show that the dynamics of convergence resemble an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process, a common model in nonequilibrium stochastic dynamics. Using standard analytical and computational techniques, we find that the hyperprior magnitudes, representing the learning time, determine the convergence value and the asymptotic entropy of the preferences across pairs of agents. We also show that the dynamical variance in preferences is characterized by a relaxation time $t^\star$, and compute its asymptotic upper bound. This formulation enhances the existing toolkit for modeling stochastic, interactive agents by formalizing leading theories in learning theory, and builds towards more comprehensive models of open problems in principal-agent and market theory.
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