Human movement differs from robot control because of its flexibility in unknown environments, robustness to perturbation, and tolerance of unknown parameters and unpredictable variability. We propose a new theory, risk-aware control, in which movement is governed by estimates of risk based on uncertainty about the current state and knowledge of the cost of errors. We demonstrate the existence of a feedback control law that implements risk-aware control and show that this control law can be directly implemented by populations of spiking neurons. Simulated examples of risk-aware control for time-varying cost functions as well as learning of unknown dynamics in a stochastic risky environment are provided.

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