Disentangled Contrastive Learning on Graphs

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 (NeurIPS 2021)

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Haoyang Li, Xin Wang, Ziwei Zhang, Zehuan Yuan, Hang Li, Wenwu Zhu


Recently, self-supervised learning for graph neural networks (GNNs) has attracted considerable attention because of their notable successes in learning the representation of graph-structure data. However, the formation of a real-world graph typically arises from the highly complex interaction of many latent factors. The existing self-supervised learning methods for GNNs are inherently holistic and neglect the entanglement of the latent factors, resulting in the learned representations suboptimal for downstream tasks and difficult to be interpreted. Learning disentangled graph representations with self-supervised learning poses great challenges and remains largely ignored by the existing literature. In this paper, we introduce the Disentangled Graph Contrastive Learning (DGCL) method, which is able to learn disentangled graph-level representations with self-supervision. In particular, we first identify the latent factors of the input graph and derive its factorized representations. Each of the factorized representations describes a latent and disentangled aspect pertinent to a specific latent factor of the graph. Then we propose a novel factor-wise discrimination objective in a contrastive learning manner, which can force the factorized representations to independently reflect the expressive information from different latent factors. Extensive experiments on both synthetic and real-world datasets demonstrate the superiority of our method against several state-of-the-art baselines.