Towards human-robot teams: Model-based analysis of human decision making in two-alternative choice tasks with social feedback

Andrew Stewart, Ming Cao, Andrea Nedic, Damon Tomlin and Naomi Ehrich Leonard

Proceedings of the IEEE, 100:3, 751-775, 2012.
With a principled methodology for systematic design of human-robot decision-making teams as a motivating goal, we seek an analytic, model-based description of the influence of team and network design parameters on decision-making performance. Given that there are few reliably predictive models of human decision making, we consider the relatively well understood two-alternative choice tasks from cognitive psychology, where individuals make sequential decisions with limited information, and we study a stochastic decision-making model, which has been successfully fitted to human behavioral and neural data for a range of such tasks. We use an extension of the model, fitted to experimental data from groups of humans performing the same task simultaneously and receiving feedback on the choices of others in the group. First, we show how the task and model can be regarded as a Markov process. Then, we derive analytically the steady-state probability distributions for decisions and performance as a function of model and design parameters such as the strength and path of the social feedback. Finally, we discuss application to human-robot team and network design and next steps with a multi-robot testbed.

(Paper PDF, 1.7 MB)
Back to home page
Back to publications page