AgraSSt: Approximate Graph Stein Statistics for Interpretable Assessment of Implicit Graph Generators

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 35 (NeurIPS 2022) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper Supplemental


Wenkai Xu, Gesine D Reinert


We propose and analyse a novel statistical procedure, coined AgraSSt, to assess the quality of graph generators which may not be available in explicit forms. In particular, AgraSSt can be used to determine whether a learned graph generating process is capable of generating graphs which resemble a given input graph. Inspired by Stein operators for random graphs, the key idea of AgraSSt is the construction of a kernel discrepancy based on an operator obtained from the graph generator. AgraSSt can provide interpretable criticisms for a graph generator training procedure and help identify reliable sample batches for downstream tasks. We give theoretical guarantees for a broad class of random graph models. Moreover, we provide empirical results on both synthetic input graphs with known graph generation procedures, and real-world input graphs that the state-of-the-art (deep) generative models for graphs are trained on.