Center for Human Modeling and Simulation

Learning Determinantal Point Processes

Ben Taskar, University of Pennsylvania
Alex Kulesza, University of Pennsylvania

Document Type Conference Paper


Determinantal point processes (DPPs), which arise in random matrix theory and quantum physics, are natural models for subset selection problems where diversity is preferred. Among many remarkable properties, DPPs other tractable algorithms for exact inference, including computing marginal probabilities and sampling; how- ever, an important open question has been how to learn a DPP from labeled training data. In this paper we propose a natural feature-based parameterization of conditional DPPs, and show how it leads to a convex and efficient learning formulation. We analyze the relationship between our model and binary Markov random fields with repulsive potentials, which are qualitatively similar but computationally intractable. Finally, we apply our approach to the task of extractive summarization, where the goal is to choose a small subset of sentences conveying the most important information from a set of documents. In this task there is a fundamental tradeoff between sentences that are highly relevant to the collection as a whole, and sentences that are diverse and not repetitive. Our parameterization allows us to naturally balance these two characteristics. We evaluate our system on data from the DUC 2003/04 multi- document summarization task, achieving state-of-the-art results.


Date Posted: 11 July 2012