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Primal-Dual Stochastic Mirror Descent for MDPs

Daniil Tiapkin · Alexander Gasnikov


We consider the problem of learning the optimal policy for infinite-horizon Markov decision processes (MDPs). For this purpose, some variant of Stochastic Mirror Descent is proposed for convex programming problems with Lipschitz-continuous functionals. An important detail is the ability to use inexact values of functional constraints and compute the value of dual variables. We analyze this algorithm in a general case and obtain an estimate of the convergence rate that does not accumulate errors during the operation of the method. Using this algorithm, we get the first parallel algorithm for mixing average-reward MDPs with a generative model without reduction to discounted MDP. One of the main features of the presented method is low communication costs in a distributed centralized setting, even with very large networks.

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