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Active Inference, homeostatic regulation and adaptive behavioural control

By G. Pezzulo, F. Rigoli and K. J. Friston


We review a theory of homeostatic regulation and adaptive behavioural control within the Active Inference framework. Our aim is to connect two research streams that are usually considered independently; namely, Active Inference and associative learning theories of animal behaviour. The former uses a probabilistic (Bayesian) formulation of perception and action, while the latter calls on multiple (Pavlovian, habitual, goal-directed) processes for homeostatic and behavioural control. We offer a synthesis these classical processes and cast them as successive hierarchical contextualisations of sensorimotor constructs, using the generative models that underpin Active Inference. This dissolves any apparent mechanistic distinction between the optimization processes that mediate classical control or learning. Furthermore, we generalize the scope of Active Inference by emphasizing interoceptive inference and homeostatic regulation. The ensuing homeostatic (or allostatic) perspective provides an intuitive explanation for how priors act as drives or goals to enslave action, and emphasises the embodied nature of inference

Topics: BF
Publisher: 'Elsevier BV'
Year: 2015
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.pneurobio.2015.09.001
OAI identifier:
Provided by: City Research Online

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