Minimum Average Cost Clustering

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 23 (NIPS 2010)

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Kiyohito Nagano, Yoshinobu Kawahara, Satoru Iwata


A number of objective functions in clustering problems can be described with submodular functions. In this paper, we introduce the minimum average cost criterion, and show that the theory of intersecting submodular functions can be used for clustering with submodular objective functions. The proposed algorithm does not require the number of clusters in advance, and it will be determined by the property of a given set of data points. The minimum average cost clustering problem is parameterized with a real variable, and surprisingly, we show that all information about optimal clusterings for all parameters can be computed in polynomial time in total. Additionally, we evaluate the performance of the proposed algorithm through computational experiments.