Spring 2022

Causality Program Visitor Speaker Series: Efficient Intervention Design for Causal Discovery with Latents

Friday, Mar. 11, 2022 2:00 pm3:00 pm PST

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Calvin Lab Room 116

In this talk, we consider the problem of recovering a causal graph in presence of latent variables, where we seek to minimize the cost of interventions used in the recovery process. We consider two intervention cost models: (1) a linear cost model where the cost of an intervention on a subset of variables has a linear form, and (2) an identity cost model where the cost of an intervention is the same, regardless of what variables it is on, i.e., the goal is just to minimize the number of interventions. Under the linear cost model, we give an algorithm to identify the ancestral relations of the underlying causal graph, achieving within a factor of the optimal intervention cost. Under the identity cost model, we bound the number of interventions needed to recover the entire causal graph, including the latent variables, using a parameterization of the causal graph  through a special type of colliders.

Joint work with Raghavendra Addanki, Cameron Musco, and Andrew McGregor.