I mean I know why we specifically care about convex functions: it's because their local minimum are also global, and so you just have to "follow a path which goes down" to find the minima of the function.
However, there are also functions which are not convex, but for which local minima are also global minima, for example, a function which looks like this:
Isn't there a way to characterize every function which "works well" with gradient descent? Something like "if f has a local minima, then it's also a global minima", which would be a weaker hypothesis than convex?
PS: When writing this, I also realize that we have a problem with functions like $x \mapsto x^3$, for which gradient descent could stop on a "plateau". Anyway, my question remains the same: Isn't it possible to define a more general class of functions for which gradient descent works better than the convex functions?