Neuro-Symbolic Procedural Planning with Commonsense Prompting


Procedural planning aims to implement complex high-level goals by decomposition into sequential simpler low-level steps. Although procedural planning is a basic skill set for humans in daily life, it remains a challenge for large language models (LLMs) that lack a deep understanding of the cause-effect relations in procedures. Previous methods require manual exemplars to acquire procedural planning knowledge from LLMs in the zero-shot setting. However, such elicited pre-trained knowledge in LLMs induces spurious correlations between goals and steps, which impair the model generalization to unseen tasks. In contrast, this paper proposes a neuro-symbolic procedural PLANner (PLAN) that elicits procedural planning knowledge from the LLMs with commonsense-infused prompting. To mitigate spurious goal-step correlations, we use symbolic program executors on the latent procedural representations to formalize prompts from commonsense knowledge bases as a causal intervention toward the Structural Causal Model. Both automatic and human evaluations on WikiHow and RobotHow show the superiority of PLAN on procedural planning without further training or manual exemplars.

ICB Affiliated Authors

Yujie Lu, Weixi Feng, Wanrong Zhu, Wenda Xu, Xin Eric Wang, Miguel Eckstein, William Yang Wang
Peer-Reviewed Conference Presentation
arXiv. Proceedings of Eleventh International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR)