Ensemble Clustering using Semidefinite Programming

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 20 (NIPS 2007)

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Vikas Singh, Lopamudra Mukherjee, Jiming Peng, Jinhui Xu


We consider the ensemble clustering problem where the task is to ‘aggregate’ multiple clustering solutions into a single consolidated clustering that maximizes the shared information among given clustering solutions. We obtain several new results for this problem. First, we note that the notion of agreement under such circumstances can be better captured using an agreement measure based on a 2D string encoding rather than voting strategy based methods proposed in literature. Using this generalization, we first derive a nonlinear optimization model to max- imize the new agreement measure. We then show that our optimization problem can be transformed into a strict 0-1 Semidefinite Program (SDP) via novel con- vexification techniques which can subsequently be relaxed to a polynomial time solvable SDP. Our experiments indicate improvements not only in terms of the proposed agreement measure but also the existing agreement measures based on voting strategies. We discuss evaluations on clustering and image segmentation databases.