Dueling Bandits with Team Comparisons

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 pre-proceedings (NeurIPS 2021)

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Authors

Lee Cohen, Ulrike Schmidt-Kraepelin, Yishay Mansour

Abstract

We introduce the dueling teams problem, a new online-learning setting in which the learner observes noisy comparisons of disjoint pairs of $k$-sized teams from a universe of $n$ players. The goal of the learner is to minimize the number of duels required to identify, with high probability, a Condorcet winning team, i.e., a team which wins against any other disjoint team (with probability at least $1/2$).Noisy comparisons are linked to a total order on the teams. We formalize our model by building upon the dueling bandits setting (Yue et al. 2012) and provide several algorithms, both for stochastic and deterministic settings. For the stochastic setting, we provide a reduction to the classical dueling bandits setting, yielding an algorithm that identifies a Condorcet winning team within $\mathcal{O}((n + k \log (k)) \frac{\max(\log\log n, \log k)}{\Delta^2})$ duels, where $\Delta$ is a gap parameter. For deterministic feedback, we additionally present a gap-independent algorithm that identifies a Condorcet winning team within $\mathcal{O}(nk\log(k)+k^5)$ duels.