Alexandros Beskos

Alexandros Beskos
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Alexandros Beskos

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Statistics - Computation (12)
Statistics - Methodology (4)
Mathematics - Probability (4)
Mathematics - Statistics (3)
Statistics - Theory (3)
Mathematics - Numerical Analysis (2)
Mathematics - Dynamical Systems (2)
Mathematics - Optimization and Control (1)

Publications Authored By Alexandros Beskos

In this article we develop a new sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) method for multilevel (ML) Monte Carlo estimation. In particular, the method can be used to estimate expectations with respect to a target probability distribution over an infinite-dimensional and non-compact space as given, for example, by a Bayesian inverse problem with Gaussian random field prior. Under suitable assumptions the MLSMC method has the optimal $O(\epsilon^{-2})$ bound on the cost to obtain a mean-square error of $O(\epsilon^2)$. Read More

In this paper we consider filtering and smoothing of partially observed chaotic dynamical systems that are discretely observed, with an additive Gaussian noise in the observation. These models are found in a wide variety of real applications and include the Lorenz 96' model. In the context of a fixed observation interval $T$, observation frequency $h$ and Gaussian observation variance $\sigma_Z^2$, we show under assumptions that the filter and smoother are well approximated by a Gaussian when $\sigma^2_Z h$ is sufficiently small. Read More

This article presents results on the concentration properties of the smoothing and filtering distributions of some partially observed chaotic dynamical systems. We show that, rather surprisingly, for the geometric model of the Lorenz equations, as well as some other chaotic dynamical systems, the smoothing and filtering distributions do not concentrate around the true position of the signal, as the number of observations tends to infinity. Instead, under various assumptions on the observation noise, we show that the expected value of the diameter of the support of the smoothing and filtering distributions remains lower bounded by a constant times the standard deviation of the noise, independently of the number of observations. Read More

Bayesian inverse problems often involve sampling posterior distributions on infinite-dimensional function spaces. Traditional Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithms are characterized by deteriorating mixing times upon mesh-refinement, when the finite-dimensional approximations become more accurate. Such methods are typically forced to reduce step-sizes as the discretization gets finer, and thus are expensive as a function of dimension. Read More

In this paper we study the asymptotic behavior of the Random-Walk Metropolis algorithm on probability densities with two different `scales', where most of the probability mass is distributed along certain key directions with the `orthogonal' directions containing relatively less mass. Such class of probability measures arise in various applied contexts including Bayesian inverse problems where the posterior measure concentrates on a sub-manifold when the noise variance goes to zero. When the target measure concentrates on a linear sub-manifold, we derive analytically a diffusion limit for the Random-Walk Metropolis Markov chain as the scale parameter goes to zero. Read More

We observe an undirected graph $G$ without multiple edges and self-loops, which is to represent a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network. We assume that $G$ evolved under the duplication-mutation with complementarity (DMC) model from a seed graph, $G_0$, and we also observe the binary forest $\Gamma$ that represents the duplication history of $G$. A posterior density for the DMC model parameters is established, and we outline a sampling strategy by which one can perform Bayesian inference; that sampling strategy employs a particle marginal Metropolis-Hastings (PMMH) algorithm. Read More

We observe $n$ sequences at each of $m$ sites, and assume that they have evolved from an ancestral sequence that forms the root of a binary tree of known topology and branch lengths, but the sequence states at internal nodes are unknown. The topology of the tree and branch lengths are the same for all sites, but the parameters of the evolutionary model can vary over sites. We assume a piecewise constant model for these parameters, with an unknown number of change-points and hence a trans-dimensional parameter space over which we seek to perform Bayesian inference. Read More

We combine two important recent advancements of MCMC algorithms: first, methods utilizing the intrinsic manifold structure of the parameter space; then, algorithms effective for targets in infinite-dimensions with the critical property that their mixing time is robust to mesh refinement. Read More

We consider the inverse problem of estimating the initial condition of a partial differential equation, which is only observed through noisy measurements at discrete time intervals. In particular, we focus on the case where Eulerian measurements are obtained from the time and space evolving vector field, whose evolution obeys the two-dimensional Navier-Stokes equations defined on a torus. This context is particularly relevant to the area of numerical weather forecasting and data assimilation. Read More

We consider continuous-time diffusion models driven by fractional Brownian motion. Observations are assumed to possess a non-trivial likelihood given the latent path. Due to the non-Markovianity and high-dimensionality of the latent paths, estimating posterior expectations is a computationally challenging undertaking. Read More

In several implementations of Sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) methods it is natural, and important in terms of algorithmic efficiency, to exploit the information of the history of the samples to optimally tune their subsequent propagations. In this article we provide a carefully formulated asymptotic theory for a class of such \emph{adaptive} SMC methods. The theoretical framework developed here will cover, under assumptions, several commonly used SMC algorithms. Read More

The need to calibrate increasingly complex statistical models requires a persistent effort for further advances on available, computationally intensive Monte Carlo methods. We study here an advanced version of familiar Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithms that sample from target distributions defined as change of measures from Gaussian laws on general Hilbert spaces. Such a model structure arises in several contexts: we focus here at the important class of statistical models driven by diffusion paths whence the Wiener process constitutes the reference Gaussian law. Read More

In a recent paper Beskos et al (2011), the Sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) sampler introduced in Del Moral et al (2006), Neal (2001) has been shown to be asymptotically stable in the dimension of the state space d at a cost that is only polynomial in d, when N the number of Monte Carlo samples, is fixed. More precisely, it has been established that the effective sample size (ESS) of the ensuing (approximate) sample and the Monte Carlo error of fixed dimensional marginals will converge as $d$ grows, with a computational cost of $\mathcal{O}(Nd^2)$. In the present work, further results on SMC methods in high dimensions are provided as $d\to\infty$ and with $N$ fixed. Read More

We present an iterative sampling method which delivers upper and lower bounding processes for the Brownian path. We develop such processes with particular emphasis on being able to unbiasedly simulate them on a personal computer. The dominating processes converge almost surely in the supremum and $L_1$ norms. Read More

We investigate the stability of a Sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) method applied to the problem of sampling from a target distribution on $\mathbb{R}^d$ for large $d$. It is well known that using a single importance sampling step one produces an approximation for the target that deteriorates as the dimension $d$ increases, unless the number of Monte Carlo samples $N$ increases at an exponential rate in $d$. We show that this degeneracy can be avoided by introducing a sequence of artificial targets, starting from a `simple' density and moving to the one of interest, using an SMC method to sample from the sequence. Read More

We investigate the properties of the Hybrid Monte-Carlo algorithm (HMC) in high dimensions. HMC develops a Markov chain reversible w.r. Read More

We investigate local MCMC algorithms, namely the random-walk Metropolis and the Langevin algorithms, and identify the optimal choice of the local step-size as a function of the dimension $n$ of the state space, asymptotically as $n\to\infty$. We consider target distributions defined as a change of measure from a product law. Such structures arise, for instance, in inverse problems or Bayesian contexts when a product prior is combined with the likelihood. Read More

This paper introduces a Monte Carlo method for maximum likelihood inference in the context of discretely observed diffusion processes. The method gives unbiased and a.s. Read More

We describe a new, surprisingly simple algorithm, that simulates exact sample paths of a class of stochastic differential equations. It involves rejection sampling and, when applicable, returns the location of the path at a random collection of time instances. The path can then be completed without further reference to the dynamics of the target process. Read More