Tue, 03 May 2022

15:30 - 16:30
L3

Quotients by Algebraic Foliations

Federico Bongiorno
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

Given a variety defined over a field of characteristic zero and an algebraically integrable foliation of corank less than or equal to two, we show the existence of a categorical quotient, defined on the non-empty open subset of algebraically smooth points, through which every invariant morphism factors uniquely. Some applications to quotients by connected groups will be discussed.
 

Fri, 20 May 2022

15:00 - 16:00
L3

Approximating Persistent Homology for Large Datasets

Anthea Monod
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

Persistent homology is an important methodology from topological data analysis which adapts theory from algebraic topology to data settings and has been successfully implemented in many applications. It produces a statistical summary in the form of a persistence diagram, which captures the shape and size of the data. Despite its widespread use, persistent homology is simply impossible to implement when a dataset is very large. In this talk, I will address the problem of finding a representative persistence diagram for prohibitively large datasets. We adapt the classical statistical method of bootstrapping, namely, drawing and studying smaller multiple subsamples from the large dataset. We show that the mean of the persistence diagrams of subsamples—taken as a mean persistence measure computed from the subsamples—is a valid approximation of the true persistent homology of the larger dataset. We give the rate of convergence of the mean persistence diagram to the true persistence diagram in terms of the number of subsamples and size of each subsample. Given the complex algebraic and geometric nature of persistent homology, we adapt the convexity and stability properties in the space of persistence diagrams together with random set theory to achieve our theoretical results for the general setting of point cloud data. We demonstrate our approach on simulated and real data, including an application of shape clustering on complex large-scale point cloud data.

 

This is joint work with Yueqi Cao (Imperial College London).

Mon, 29 Nov 2021

14:00 - 15:00

Parameter Estimation for the McKean-Vlasov Stochastic Differential Equation

Nikolas Kantas
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

We consider the problem of parameter estimation for a McKean stochastic differential equation, and the associated system of weakly interacting particles. The problem is motivated by many applications in areas such as neuroscience, social sciences (opinion dynamics, cooperative behaviours), financial mathematics, statistical physics. We will first survey some model properties related to propagation of chaos and ergodicity and then move on to discuss the problem of parameter estimation both in offline and on-line settings. In the on-line case, we propose an online estimator, which evolves according to a continuous-time stochastic gradient descent algorithm on the asymptotic log-likelihood of the interacting particle system. The talk will present our convergence results and then show some numerical results for two examples, a linear mean field model and a stochastic opinion dynamics model. This is joint work with Louis Sharrock, Panos Parpas and Greg Pavliotis. Preprint: https://arxiv.org/abs/2106.13751

Thu, 14 Oct 2021

16:00 - 17:00
Virtual

Kernel-based Statistical Methods for Functional Data

George Wynne
(Imperial College London)
Further Information

ww.datasig.ac.uk/events

Abstract

Kernel-based statistical algorithms have found wide success in statistical machine learning in the past ten years as a non-parametric, easily computable engine for reasoning with probability measures. The main idea is to use a kernel to facilitate a mapping of probability measures, the objects of interest, into well-behaved spaces where calculations can be carried out. This methodology has found wide application, for example two-sample testing, independence testing, goodness-of-fit testing, parameter inference and MCMC thinning. Most theoretical investigations and practical applications have focused on Euclidean data. This talk will outline work that adapts the kernel-based methodology to data in an arbitrary Hilbert space which then opens the door to applications for functional data, where a single data sample is a discretely observed function, for example time series or random surfaces. Such data is becoming increasingly more prominent within the statistical community and in machine learning. Emphasis shall be given to the two-sample and goodness-of-fit testing problems.

Fri, 04 Jun 2021

14:00 - 15:00
Virtual

The orbital diameter of affine and diagonal groups

Kamilla Rekvényi
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

Let $G$ be a group acting transitively on a finite set $\Omega$. Then $G$ acts on $\Omega \times \Omega$ componentwise. Define the orbitals to be the orbits of $G$ on $\Omega \times \Omega$. The diagonal orbital is the orbital of the form $\Delta = \{(\alpha, \alpha) \mid \alpha \in \Omega \}$. The others are called non-diagonal orbitals. Let $\Gamma$ be a non-diagonal orbital. Define an orbital graph to be the non-directed graph with vertex set $\Omega$ and edge set $(\alpha,\beta) \in \Gamma$ with $\alpha, \beta \in \Omega$. If the action of $G$ on $\Omega$ is primitive, then all non-diagonal orbital graphs are connected. The orbital diameter of a primitive permutation group is the supremum of the diameters of its non-diagonal orbital graphs.

There has been a lot of interest in finding bounds on the orbital diameter of primitive permutation groups. In my talk I will outline some important background information and the progress made towards finding specific bounds on the orbital diameter. In particular, I will discuss some results on the orbital diameter of the groups of simple diagonal type and their connection to the covering number of finite simple groups. I will also discuss some results for affine groups, which provides a nice connection to the representation theory of quasisimple groups. 

Tue, 18 May 2021

14:00 - 15:00
Virtual

FFTA: Modularity maximisation for graphons

Florian Klimm
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

Networks are a widely-used tool to investigate the large-scale connectivity structure in complex systems and graphons have been proposed as an infinite size limit of dense networks. The detection of communities or other meso-scale structures is a prominent topic in network science as it allows the identification of functional building blocks in complex systems. When such building blocks may be present in graphons is an open question. In this paper, we define a graphon-modularity and demonstrate that it can be maximised to detect communities in graphons. We then investigate specific synthetic graphons and show that they may show a wide range of different community structures. We also reformulate the graphon-modularity maximisation as a continuous optimisation problem and so prove the optimal community structure or lack thereof for some graphons, something that is usually not possible for networks. Furthermore, we demonstrate that estimating a graphon from network data as an intermediate step can improve the detection of communities, in comparison with exclusively maximising the modularity of the network. While the choice of graphon-estimator may strongly influence the accord between the community structure of a network and its estimated graphon, we find that there is a substantial overlap if an appropriate estimator is used. Our study demonstrates that community detection for graphons is possible and may serve as a privacy-preserving way to cluster network data.

arXiv link: https://arxiv.org/abs/2101.00503

Thu, 29 Apr 2021

16:00 - 17:00

Trading with the crowd

EYAL NEUMAN
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

Abstract: We formulate and solve a multi-player stochastic differential game between financial agents who seek to cost-efficiently liquidate their position in a risky asset in the presence of jointly aggregated transient price impact on the risky asset's execution price along with taking into account a common general price predicting signal. In contrast to an interaction of the agents through purely permanent price impact as it is typically considered in the literature on multi-player price impact games, accrued transient price impact does not persist but decays over time. The unique Nash-equilibrium strategies reveal how each agent's liquidation policy adjusts the predictive trading signal for the accumulated transient price distortion induced by all other agents' price impact; and thus unfolds a direct and natural link in equilibrium between the trading signal and the agents' trading activity. We also formulate and solve the corresponding mean field game in the limit of infinitely many agents and show how the latter provides an approximate Nash-equilibrium for the finite-player game. Specifically we prove the convergence of the N-players game optimal strategy to the optimal strategy of the mean field game.     (Joint work with Moritz Voss)
 

Thu, 25 Feb 2021

12:00 - 13:00
Virtual

Homogenization in randomly perforated domains

Arianna Giunti
(Imperial College London)
Further Information

A link for this talk will be sent to our mailing list a day or two in advance.  If you are not on the list and wish to be sent a link, please contact Benjamin Fehrman.

Abstract

We consider the homogenization of a Stokes system in a domain having many small random holes. This model mainly arises from problems of solid-fluid interaction (e.g. the flow of a viscous and incompressible fluid through a porous medium). We aim at the rigorous derivation of the homogenization limit both in the Brinkmann regime and in the one of Darcy’s law. In particular, we focus on holes that are distributed according to probability measures that allow for overlapping and clustering phenomena.

Thu, 25 Feb 2021

16:00 - 17:00

Large–scale Principal-agent Problems in Continuous–time

EMMA HUBERT
(Imperial College London)
Abstract

In this talk, we will introduce two problems of contract theory, in continuous–time, with a multitude of agents. First, we will study a model of optimal contracting in a hierarchy, which generalises the one–period framework of Sung (2015). The hierarchy is modeled by a series of interlinked principal–agent problems, leading to a sequence of Stackelberg equilibria. More precisely, the principal (she) can contract with a manager (he), to incentivise him to act in her best interest, despite only observing the net benefits of the total hierarchy. The manager in turn subcontracts the agents below him. Both agents and the manager each independently control a stochastic process representing their outcome. We will see through a simple example that even if the agents only control the drift of their outcome, the manager controls the volatility of the Agents’ continuation utility. Even this first simple example justifies the use of recent results on optimal contracting for drift and volatility control, and therefore the theory on 2BSDEs. We will also discuss some possible extensions of this model. In particular, one extension consists in the elaboration of more general contracts, indexing the compensation of one worker on the result of the others. This increase in the complexity of contracts is beneficial for the principal, and constitutes a first approach to even more complex contracts, in the case, for example, of a continuum of workers with mean–field interactions. This will lead us to introduce the second problem, namely optimal contracting for demand–response management, which consists in extending the model by Aïd, Possamaï, and Touzi (2019) to a mean–field of consumers. Finally, we will conclude by mentioning that this principal-agent approach with a multitude of agents can be used to address many situations, for example to model incentives for
lockdown in the current epidemic context.
 

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