IEEE Task Force on Evolutionary Developmental Systems and Robotics
IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CIS) Technical Committee on
Cognitive and Developmental Systems (CDS)
Aim and Scope
The objective of this task force is to strengthen the links between
evolutionary approaches in artificial intelligence and the developmental and
cognitive systems community. There are many potential convergences and common
discussion topics, including, but not limited to:
- A large part of the evolutionary intelligence community work on
“Generative and Developmental Encoding” to evolve large, life-like neural
networks (“artificial brains”); as the name suggest it, these encoding exploit
developmental rules to make large neural networks that exhibit some features of
biological nervous systems like modularity, hierarchy, repetition, symmetry,
- A new trend in evolutionary intelligence is to study alternative
selective pressures and, in particular, selective pressures that encourage
exploration (novelty search, behavioral diversity, etc.); these techniques
share many objectives and ideas with the exploration algorithms studied in the
developmental robotics community (e.g. babbling).
- Evolution can be an effective metaphore to explain and therefore
imitate the plasticity of the brain (see neural darwinism and neural
- Evolution and life-time learning are two complementary processes that
interact at different scales and a key research avenue is to understand what
should be designed by evolution and what should be left for life-time
Task Force Chair:
Jim Torresen, University of Oslo, Norway
Task Force Vice-Chairs:
Eiben, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam,
Doncieux, Sorbonne Université,
Task Force Members:
Soltoggio, Loughborough University,
Clark, Missouri State
Emma Hart, Edinburgh Napier University, UK
M. Moore, Grand Valley State
Mouret, INRIA, France
Clune, University of Wyoming/Uber
AI Labs, US
Glette, University of Oslo,
Bredeche, Sorbonne Université,
Sanaz Mostaghim, Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany
Risi, IT University of
Nichele, Oslo Metropolitan
(together with Andy Tyrrell and Emma Hart) is a guest editors
for a Special Issue on Towards autonomous evolution,
(re)production and learning in robotic eco-systems, IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems
Doncieux (together with Antoine Cully and Jean-Baptiste Mouret) gave a tutorial
at GECCO 2020 on Quality-Diversity Optimization
(together with Emma Hart and David Howard) organised a the
workshop "ADRR — Automated Design of Robots for the Real-world" at
issue of Congitive Neurosynamics (Springer) as follow up of the workshop we
organized at IEEE ICDL-EPIROB in Oslo. Link https://www.springer.com/journal/11571/updates/17312386
Issue (SI) on Development and Learning and on Epigenetic Robotics in IEEE
Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems. SI with extended versions
of the best papers presented in the 2019 ICDL-EpiRob conference.
Nichele is co-chairing IEEE ALIFE at IEEE SSCI 2020. Both “evolutionary
developmental systems” and robotics are within the scope. Link: http://www.ieeessci2020.org/symposiums/alife.html.
Location Canberra Australia, 1-4 December 2020.
· Pontes-Filho, Sidney,
Pedro Lind, Anis Yazidi, Jianhua Zhang, Hugo Hammer, Gustavo BM Mello, Ioanna
Sandvig, Gunnar Tufte, and Stefano Nichele. "EvoDynamic: A Framework for the Evolution of Generally
Represented Dynamical Systems and Its Application to Criticality." In International
Conference on the Applications of Evolutionary Computation (Part of EvoStar),
pp. 133-148. Springer, Cham, 2020. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-43722-0_9
· K. Heiney, O. H. Ramstad, I. Sandvig, A. Sandvig and S. Nichele,
"Assessment and manipulation of the computational capacity of in vitro
neuronal networks through criticality in neuronal avalanches," 2019 IEEE
Symposium Series on Computational Intelligence (SSCI), Xiamen, China, 2019, pp.
247-254, doi: 10.1109/SSCI44817.2019.9002693. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/9002693
· Eseoghene Ben-Iwhiwhu, Pawel Ladosz, Jeffery Dick, Wen-Hua Chen,
Praveen Pilly, Andrea Soltoggio, "Evolving Inborn Knowledge For Fast Adaptation in Dynamic POMDP Problems",
accepted as a full paper at GECCO 2020. https://arxiv.org/abs/2004.12846
· Paul Ecoffet, Nicolas Bredeche, Jean-Baptiste André. Nothing better to do? Environment quality and the evolution of cooperation by
partner choice. Preprint on Biorxiv: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.04.076141v1
Fontbonne, Olivier Dauchot and Nicolas Bredeche. Distributed On-line Learning
in Swarm Robotics with Limited Communication Bandwidth. Accepted at the
Congress on Evolutionary Computation (CEC), 2020. (PDF not yet online)
· A. Duburcq, N. Bredeche, Y. Chevaleyre. Online Trajectory Planning
Through Combined Trajectory Optimization and Function Approximation:
Application to the Exoskeleton Atalante. Accepted at the International
Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2020. (PDF not yet
N. Bredeche, J-B. Andre. Indirect genetic effects allow to escape the
inefficient equilibrium in a coordination game. Evolution Letters, to appear in
2020. An earlier draft is available as PDF on BioArxiv: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/early/2018/09/20/422287
- Jeff Clune,
Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE)
- Stéphane Doncieux,
lectures a course at the International Summer School on Intrinsically
Motivated Open-Ended Learning (http://www.goal-robots.eu/announcements/events/summer-school-2019-2
Doncieux, "Open-ended learning in robotics", talk at the IMOL
2019 workshop (http://www.imol-conf.org
- 9th Joint IEEE International Conference on Development and Learning
and on Epigenetic Robotics.
August 19-22, 2019 in Oslo, Norway. Paper submission deadline 22 February, 2019. Early registration deadline June 15,
Doncieux and Sebastian Risi will co-chair the complex systems track at
Bredeche, Jean-Baptiste Mouret and Stéphane Doncieu will give a tutorial
on ER at GECCO 2019.
Eiben and Kyrre Glette are robotics area chairs for EvoApplications
- McAllister R, Kahn G,
Clune J, Levine S (2019) Robustness to Out-of-Distribution Inputs via Task-Aware Generative
Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA). (pdf)
KO, Clune J, Lehman J, Miikkulainen R (2019) Designing Neural Networks through Neuroevolution. Nature Machine
Intelligence, 1:1, 24-35. (pdf)
T, Rawal A, Clune J, Stanley KO (2019) Backpropamine: training self-modifying neural networks with
differentiable neuromodulated plasticity. International Conference on
Learning Systems (ICLR) (31% acceptance rate).
S., and Laflaquiere, A. and Coninx, A. (2019) Novelty Search: a Theoretical Perspective, to appear in GECCO-2019
- Alex Alcocer
(OsloMet) chaired the Autonomy Day 2018 – 2nd Workshop on Autonomous and Adaptive Systems, 3 May in Oslo, Norway including talks on
Doncieux, Joshua Auerbach, Richard Duro and Harold P. de Vladar organized
the workshop "Evolution in Cognition" at the GECCO conference in
2018, see https://sites.google.com/champlain.edu/eic2018/ .
Doncieux organised a workshop on cognitive and developmental robotics at
Sorbonne University, the 19th of April 2018 (with Verena Hafner, Jose
Santos Victor, Gianluca Baldassare, Emre Ugur, Raja Chatila and Doncieux
Doncieux has also organized a research topic in Frontiers, see https://www.frontiersin.org/research-topics/4233/evolvability-environments-embodiment-emergence-in-robotics.
Doncieux organised an exhibition at the Palais de la Découverte from March
to May 2018 (the link with some informations about that in French: http://www.palais-decouverte.fr/fr/ressources/docs-1chercheur1manip/des-robots-qui-apprennent/).
2018: Tutorial on Evolutionary Robotics at GECCO 2018 N. Bredeche, S.
Doncieux and J-B. Mouret.
Doncieux has given several talks about the DREAM project in different
contexts (7 in 2018 for academics and 4 for the general public, with an
audience varying between 20 people and more than 300).
Glette co-chaired the EvoROBOT track at EvoApplications 2018, http://www.evostar.org/2018/cfp_evorobot.php
showing the DyRET robot at the University of Oslo and some outdoor
experiments. Nbcnews.com, 25 June
Tønnes Nygaard at the University of Oslo about the DyRET robot and
evolutionary robotics. Digitaltrends.com,
23. may 2018
with Tønnes Nygaard about the DyRET robot and work developing it at the
University of Oslo. Wired.com, 18. may
Learning: A Conceptual Framework Based on Representational
Redescription": https://loop.frontiersin.org/publications/51950747, A paper from the DREAM project consortium
about a formalisation of open-ended learning (in which evolutionary
approaches are relevant)
Q-Learning for robotics from Neuro-Evolution Results": https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/7879193, This is one instance of the formalisation
described in the paper above: The authors start with evolution to generate
examples out of which we can extract a representation that will allow to
generalize and learn faster.
O. Stanley, Jeff Clune, Welcoming the Era of Deep Neuroevolution
- Tønnes F. Nygaard, Charles P. Martin, Eivind
Samuelsen, Jim Torresen, Kyrre Glette.Real-World Evolution Adapts Robot Morphology and Control to
Hardware Limitations. In GECCO18 (ACM),
F. Nygaard, Charles P. Martin, Jim Torresen, Kyrre Glette. Self-Modifying Morphology Experiments with DyRET: Dynamic Robot for
Embodied Testing. Preprint: Arxiv, 2018.
F. Nygaard, Charles P. Martin, Jim Torresen, Kyrre Glette. Exploring Mechanically Self-Reconfiguring Robots for Autonomous
Design. In Workshop on Autonomous Robot Design at
A, Stanley, K. O., Risi, S., Born to Learn: the
Inspiration, Progress, and Future of Evolved Plastic Neural Networks.
Neural Networks (2018) DOI: 10.1016/j.neunet.2018.07.013 arXiv: https://arxiv.org/abs/1703.10371
C, Clune J (2018) Deep curiosity search: Intra-life exploration improves performance
on challenging deep reinforcement problems. NIPS Deep Reinforcement
Learning Workshop. (pdf)
J, Chen J, Clune J, Stanley KO (2018) Safe mutations for deep and recurrent neural networks through
output gradients. Proceedings of the
Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO). (pdf)
E, Madhavan V, Such FP, Lehman J, Stanley KO, Clune J (2018) Improving exploration in evolution strategies for deep
reinforcement learning via a population of novelty-seeking agents. Advances in Neural Information Processing
Systems (NIPS) 32 (20% acceptance rate). (pdf)
J, Chen J, Clune J, Stanley KO (2018) ES is more than just a traditional finite-difference approximator. Proceedings of the Genetic and Evolutionary
Computation Conference (GECCO). (pdf)
T, Clune J, Stanley KO (2018) Differentiable plasticity: Training plastic neural networks with
backpropagation. ICML. (pdf)
FP, Madhavan V, Conti E, Lehman J, Stanley KO, Clune J (2018) Deep neuroevolution: Genetic algorithms are a competitive
alternative for training deep neural networks for reinforcement learning. NIPS Deep Reinforcement
Learning Workshop. (pdf)
MS, Nguyen A, Kosmala M, Swanson A, Palmer M, Parker C, Clune J (2018) Automatically identifying, counting, and describing wild animals in
camera-trap images with deep learning.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Vol. 115 no. 25. (pdf) (html) (featured on the cover)
- Stefano Nichele
chaired the Workshop on Autonomous and Adaptive Systems, 11 May in Oslo including talks on ER.
2017: Nicolas Bredèche Tutorial chair at ECAL 2017
2017: Proceedings of the Fourteenth European Conference Artificial Life,
ECAL 2017 (MIT Press 2017, ISBN 978-0-262-34633-7). Editors: Carole
Knibbe, Guillaume Beslon, David P. Parsons, Dusan Misevic, Jonathan
Rouzaud-Cornabas, Nicolas Bredèche, Salima Hassas, Olivier Simonin, Hédi
2017: Workshop on evolving physical systems at ECAL 2017. Organizers: John
Rieffel, Jean-Baptiste Mouret, Nicolas Bredèche, Evert Haasdijk
2017: Workshop on evolving collective behaviors in robotics at GECCO 2017,
Organizers: N. Bredeche, E. Haasdijk, A. Prieto and H. Hamman.
2017: Tutorial on Evolutionary Robotics at GECCO 2017. Organizers: N.
Bredeche, S. Doncieux and J-B. Mouret.
2017: special issue on evolving physical systems of ALIFE journal (MIT
John Rieffel, Jean-Baptiste Mouret, Nicolas Bredèche, Evert Haasdijk
- Sept.2016: Tutorial
chair at PPSN 2016. chairs: N. Bredeche and Carola Doerr
- Stéphane Doncieux
initiated a dialogue on “Representational redescription in humans and machines”, in the
IEEE CIS Newsletter on CDS, 12(1).
Mouret, J Clune, A. Cully and D. Tarapore published a milestone article in
Nature: Cully, A., Clune, J., Tarapore, D., & Mouret, J. B. (2015). Robots that can adapt like
animals1. Nature, 521 (7553), 503-507.
2015: Sebastian Risi and Jean-Baptiste Mouret are co-chairing the “Generative and Developmental Systems” track a GECCO’2015 (Madrid)
2015: Sebastian Risi was local chair or Evostar 2015 conference in
Mouret, Nicolas Bredeche and Stéphane Doncieux presented a 3-hour tutorial
about Evolutionary Robotics at GECCO 2015 (Madrid, Spain) and ECAL 2015
Risi will do a lecture about “Bio-inspired, Automated Design of Machine
Bodies and Artificial Brains” at for the Czech European Robotics Week
(Prague, November 2015).
2015: Tutorial on Evolutionary Robotics at GECCO 2015 and at ECAL 2015. Organizers: N. Bredeche, S.
Doncieux and J-B. Mouret.
2015: Fourth workshop on Evolving Physical Systems at ECAL 2015. Organizers: John Rieffel,
Jean-Baptiste Mouret, Nicolas Bredèche, Evert Haasdijk
2015: First workshop on Evolving Collective Behaviours for Robotics at
GECCO 2015. Organizers:
N. Bredeche, A. Prieto and E. Haasdijk.