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Persistently optimal policies in stochastic dynamic programming with generalized discounting

Jaśkiewicz, Anna and Matkowski, Janusz and Nowak, Andrzej S. (2011): Persistently optimal policies in stochastic dynamic programming with generalized discounting.

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Abstract

In this paper we study a Markov decision process with a non-linear discount function. Our approach is in spirit of the von Neumann-Morgenstern concept and is based on the notion of expectation. First, we define a utility on the space of trajectories of the process in the finite and infinite time horizon and then take their expected values. It turns out that the associated optimization problem leads to a non-stationary dynamic programming and an infinite system of Bellman equations, which result in obtaining persistently optimal policies. Our theory is enriched by examples.

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