Argumentation-based dialogues over cooperative plans

Medellin Gasque, Angel Rolando
Argumentation-based dialogues over cooperative plans. Doctor of Philosophy thesis, University of Liverpool.

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If autonomous agents operating with other agents in open systems are to fulfil their goals and design objectives, the need to discuss and agree upon plans of action is imperative. In this thesis I present work covering both theoretical research and practical development related to the use of argumentation-based dialogues as a way to coordinate actions in multi-agent planning scenarios. The necessity of coordination in multi-agent systems requires the development of mechanisms to propose, modify, share, monitor, and argue about plans. In this thesis I present an argumentation scheme to propose multi-agent plans and associated critical questions to critique the proposal. Such a detailed consideration of multi-agent plan composition contains the right characteristics to enable the justification of plans.This research builds upon research on practical reasoning for action proposals and considers multi-agent plan proposals where plans require several agents for their execution. A dialogue game protocol is also presented which is based on proposal framework. The protocol allows agents to engage in dialogues to agree on and modify plans based on persuasion and deliberation protocols. The detail encompassed by the argumentation scheme and critical questions means that there is a large number of critical questions, and so dialogues may be very lengthy. To overcome this issue, I investigated the issue of strategies for use with this dialogue game in terms of the different possible orderings in which critiques can be posed. The thesis presents an implementation that realises the theoretical framework in terms of a agents engaging in simulated dialogues to share and agree on a plan. The experiments allow us to investigate the effects of such strategies in terms of the number of questions issued to reach an agreement. Overall, the framework presented in this thesis allow agents to engage in dialogues over cooperative plan proposals in a structured way using well-founded argumentative principles.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy)
Additional Information: Date: 2013-08 (completed)
Uncontrolled Keywords: argumentation dialogues, cooperative plans
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Engineering > School of Electrical Engineering, Electronics and Computer Science
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2014 11:49
Last Modified: 16 Dec 2022 04:39
DOI: 10.17638/00012673