Elessar: Ethics in Norm-Aware Agents

Nirav Ajmeri, P.K. Murukannaiah, Hui Guo, Munindar P. Singh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)
209 Downloads (Pure)


We address the problem of designing agents that navigate social norms by selecting ethically appropriate actions. We present Elessar, a framework in which agents aggregate value preferences of users and select ethically appropriate actions through multicriteria decision making in different social contexts. Via simulations, seeded with a survey of user values and attitudes, we find that Elessar agents act ethically and are effective than baseline agents, in terms of (1) exhibiting the Rawlsian property of fairness, and (2) yielding a satisfactory social experience to users. Our results are stable across agent societies of different sizes and connectedness.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 19th International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS 2020
EditorsBo An, Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni, Gita Sukthankar
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4503-7518-4
Publication statusPublished - May 2020
EventAAMAS 2020: The 19th International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems - Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 9 May 202013 May 2020
Conference number: 19th

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS
ISSN (Print)1548-8403
ISSN (Electronic)1558-2914


ConferenceAAMAS 2020
Country/TerritoryNew Zealand
OtherVirtual/online event due to COVID-19
Internet address

Bibliographical note

Accepted Author Manuscript


  • Ethics
  • Fairness
  • Preferences
  • Social norms
  • Values


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