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# GRAPH-BASED ANALYSIS OF NON-RANDOM MISSING DATA PROBLEMS WITH LOW-RANK NATURE: STRUCTURED PREDICTION, MATRIX COMPLETION AND SPARSE PCA

thesis
posted on 2023-12-09, 04:31 authored by

In most theoretical studies on missing data analysis, data is typically assumed to be missing according to a specific probabilistic model. However, such assumption may not accurately reflect real-world situations, and sometimes missing is not purely random. In this thesis, our focus is on analyzing incomplete data matrices without relying on any probabilistic model assumptions for the missing schemes. To characterize a missing scheme deterministically, we employ a graph whose adjacency matrix is a binary matrix that indicates whether each matrix entry is observed or not. Leveraging its graph properties, we mathematically represent the missing pattern of an incomplete data matrix and conduct a theoretical analysis of how this non-random missing pattern affects the solvability of specific problems related to incomplete data. This dissertation primarily focuses on three types of incomplete data problems characterized by their low-rank nature: structured prediction, matrix completion, and sparse PCA.

First, we investigate a basic structured prediction problem, which involves recovering binary node labels on a fixed undirected graph, where noisy binary observations corresponding to edges are given. Essentially, this setting parallels a simple binary rank-1 symmetric matrix completion problem, where missing entries are determined by a fixed undirected graph. Our aim is to establish the fundamental limit bounds of this problem, revealing a close association between the limits and graph properties, such as connectivity.

Second, we move on to the general low-rank matrix completion problem. In this study, we establish provable guarantees for exact and approximate low-rank matrix completion problems that can be applied to any non-random missing pattern, by utilizing the observation graph corresponding to the missing scheme. We theoretically and experimentally show that the standard constrained nuclear norm minimization algorithm can successfully recover the true matrix when the observation graph is well-connected and has similar node degrees. We also verify that matrix completion is achievable with a near-optimal sample complexity rate when the observation graph has uniform node degrees and its adjacency matrix has a large spectral gap.

Finally, we address the sparse PCA problem, featuring an approximate low-rank attribute. Missing data is common in situations where sparse PCA is useful, such as single-cell RNA sequence data analysis. We propose a semidefinite relaxation of the non-convex $\ell_1$-regularized PCA problem to solve sparse PCA on incomplete data. We demonstrate that the method is particularly effective when the observation pattern has favorable properties. Our theory is substantiated through synthetic and real data analysis, showcasing the superior performance of our algorithm compared to other sparse PCA approaches, especially when the observed data pattern has specific characteristics.

## Degree Type

• Doctor of Philosophy

• Statistics

## Campus location

• West Lafayette

Jean Honorio

Qifan Song

Vinayak Rao

Arman Sabbaghi

## Exports

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