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Methodology (stat.ME)

Thu, 22 Jun 2023

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1.Feature screening for clustering analysis

Authors:Changhu Wang, Zihao Chen, Ruibin Xi

Abstract: In this paper, we consider feature screening for ultrahigh dimensional clustering analyses. Based on the observation that the marginal distribution of any given feature is a mixture of its conditional distributions in different clusters, we propose to screen clustering features by independently evaluating the homogeneity of each feature's mixture distribution. Important cluster-relevant features have heterogeneous components in their mixture distributions and unimportant features have homogeneous components. The well-known EM-test statistic is used to evaluate the homogeneity. Under general parametric settings, we establish the tail probability bounds of the EM-test statistic for the homogeneous and heterogeneous features, and further show that the proposed screening procedure can achieve the sure independent screening and even the consistency in selection properties. Limiting distribution of the EM-test statistic is also obtained for general parametric distributions. The proposed method is computationally efficient, can accurately screen for important cluster-relevant features and help to significantly improve clustering, as demonstrated in our extensive simulation and real data analyses.

2.Mapping poverty at multiple geographical scales

Authors:Silvia De Nicolò, Enrico Fabrizi, Aldo Gardini

Abstract: Poverty mapping is a powerful tool to study the geography of poverty. The choice of the spatial resolution is central as poverty measures defined at a coarser level may mask their heterogeneity at finer levels. We introduce a small area multi-scale approach integrating survey and remote sensing data that leverages information at different spatial resolutions and accounts for hierarchical dependencies, preserving estimates coherence. We map poverty rates by proposing a Bayesian Beta-based model equipped with a new benchmarking algorithm that accounts for the double-bounded support. A simulation study shows the effectiveness of our proposal and an application on Bangladesh is discussed.

3.Estimating dynamic treatment regimes for ordinal outcomes with household interference: Application in household smoking cessation

Authors:Cong Jiang, Mary Thompson, Michael Wallace

Abstract: The focus of precision medicine is on decision support, often in the form of dynamic treatment regimes (DTRs), which are sequences of decision rules. At each decision point, the decision rules determine the next treatment according to the patient's baseline characteristics, the information on treatments and responses accrued by that point, and the patient's current health status, including symptom severity and other measures. However, DTR estimation with ordinal outcomes is rarely studied, and rarer still in the context of interference - where one patient's treatment may affect another's outcome. In this paper, we introduce the proposed weighted proportional odds model (WPOM): a regression-based, doubly-robust approach to single-stage DTR estimation for ordinal outcomes. This method also accounts for the possibility of interference between individuals sharing a household through the use of covariate balancing weights derived from joint propensity scores. Examining different types of balancing weights, we verify the double robustness of WPOM with our adjusted weights via simulation studies. We further extend WPOM to multi-stage DTR estimation with household interference. Lastly, we demonstrate our proposed methodology in the analysis of longitudinal survey data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health study, which motivates this work.

4.Causal discovery for time series from multiple datasets with latent contexts

Authors:Wiebke Günther, Urmi Ninad, Jakob Runge

Abstract: Causal discovery from time series data is a typical problem setting across the sciences. Often, multiple datasets of the same system variables are available, for instance, time series of river runoff from different catchments. The local catchment systems then share certain causal parents, such as time-dependent large-scale weather over all catchments, but differ in other catchment-specific drivers, such as the altitude of the catchment. These drivers can be called temporal and spatial contexts, respectively, and are often partially unobserved. Pooling the datasets and considering the joint causal graph among system, context, and certain auxiliary variables enables us to overcome such latent confounding of system variables. In this work, we present a non-parametric time series causal discovery method, J(oint)-PCMCI+, that efficiently learns such joint causal time series graphs when both observed and latent contexts are present, including time lags. We present asymptotic consistency results and numerical experiments demonstrating the utility and limitations of the method.

5.On the use of the Gram matrix for multivariate functional principal components analysis

Authors:Steven Golovkine, Edward Gunning, Andrew J. Simpkin, Norma Bargary

Abstract: Dimension reduction is crucial in functional data analysis (FDA). The key tool to reduce the dimension of the data is functional principal component analysis. Existing approaches for functional principal component analysis usually involve the diagonalization of the covariance operator. With the increasing size and complexity of functional datasets, estimating the covariance operator has become more challenging. Therefore, there is a growing need for efficient methodologies to estimate the eigencomponents. Using the duality of the space of observations and the space of functional features, we propose to use the inner-product between the curves to estimate the eigenelements of multivariate and multidimensional functional datasets. The relationship between the eigenelements of the covariance operator and those of the inner-product matrix is established. We explore the application of these methodologies in several FDA settings and provide general guidance on their usability.