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Activity Number: 28 - Advances in Bayesian Theory and Methods on Network Data Modeling
Type: Topic Contributed
Date/Time: Monday, August 3, 2020 : 10:00 AM to 11:50 AM
Sponsor: Section on Bayesian Statistical Science
Abstract #312860
Title: Probabilistic Community Detection with Unknown Number of Communities
Author(s): Junxian Geng* and Debdeep Pati and Anirban Battacharya
Companies: Boehringer Ingelheim and Texas A&M University and Texas A&M University
Keywords: Bayesian nonparametrics; clustering consistency; model selection; MCMC; mixture models; network analysis

A fundamental problem in network analysis is clustering the nodes into groups which share a similar connectivity pattern. Existing algorithms for community detection assume the knowledge of the number of clusters or estimate it a priori using various selection criteria and subsequently estimate the community structure. Ignoring the uncertainty in the first stage may lead to erroneous clustering, particularly when the community structure is vague. We instead propose a coherent probabilistic framework for simultaneous estimation of the number of communities and the community structure, adapting recently developed Bayesian nonparametric techniques to network models. An efficient Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm is proposed which obviates the need to perform reversible jump MCMC on the number of clusters. The methodology is shown to outperform recently developed community detection algorithms in a variety of synthetic data examples and in benchmark real-datasets. Using an appropriate metric on the space of all configurations, we develop non-asymptotic Bayes risk bounds even when the number of clusters is unknown.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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