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Chris Schwiegelshohn, Sapienza, University of Rome, OH 14, E23

Event Date: May 3, 2018 16:15

On the Local Structure of Stable Clustering Instances

As an optimization problem, clustering exhibits a striking phenomenon: It is generally regarded as easy in practice, while theory classifies it among the computationally intractable problems. To address this dichotomy, research has identified a number of conditions a data set must satisfy for a clustering to be (1) easily computable and (2) meaningful.

In this talk we show that all previously proposed notions of struturedness of a data set are fundamentally local properties, i.e. the global optimum is in well defined sense close to a local optimum. As a corollary, this implies that the Local Search heuristic has strong performance guarantees for both the tasks of recovering the underlying optimal clustering and obtaining a clustering of small cost. The talk is based on joint work with Vincent Cohen-Addad, FOCS 2017.


Chris Schwiegelshohn is currently a post-doc in Sapienza, University of Rome. He did his Phd in Dortmund with a thesis on "Algorithms for Large-Scale Graph and Clustering Problems". Chris' research interests include streaming and approximation algorithms as well as machine learning.

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