Empowerment: An Introduction

Christoph Salge, Cornelius Glackin, D. Polani

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contribution


This book chapter is an introduction to and an overview of the information-theoretic, task independent utility function "Empowerment", which is defined as the channel capacity between an agent's actions and an agent's sensors. It quantifies how much influence and control an agent has over the world it can perceive. This book chapter discusses the general idea behind empowerment as an intrinsic motivation and showcases several previous applications of empowerment to demonstrate how empowerment can be applied to different sensor-motor configuration, and how the same formalism can lead to different observed behaviors. Furthermore, we also present a fast approximation for empowerment in the continuous domain
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGuided Self-Organization
Subtitle of host publicationInception
EditorsM. Prokopenko
PublisherSpringer Nature
Number of pages45
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-53734-9
ISBN (Print)978-3642537332
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameEmergence, Complexity and Computation


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