Riemannian Stein Variational Gradient Descent for Bayesian Inference


  • Chang Liu Tsinghua University
  • Jun Zhu Tsinghua University




Bayesian inference, Riemann manifold, Information geometry, kernel methods


We develop Riemannian Stein Variational Gradient Descent (RSVGD), a Bayesian inference method that generalizes Stein Variational Gradient Descent (SVGD) to Riemann manifold. The benefits are two-folds: (i) for inference tasks in Euclidean spaces, RSVGD has the advantage over SVGD of utilizing information geometry, and (ii) for inference tasks on Riemann manifolds, RSVGD brings the unique advantages of SVGD to the Riemannian world. To appropriately transfer to Riemann manifolds, we conceive novel and non-trivial techniques for RSVGD, which are required by the intrinsically different characteristics of general Riemann manifolds from Euclidean spaces. We also discover Riemannian Stein's Identity and Riemannian Kernelized Stein Discrepancy. Experimental results show the advantages over SVGD of exploring distribution geometry and the advantages of particle-efficiency, iteration-effectiveness and approximation flexibility over other inference methods on Riemann manifolds.




How to Cite

Liu, C., & Zhu, J. (2018). Riemannian Stein Variational Gradient Descent for Bayesian Inference. Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence, 32(1). https://doi.org/10.1609/aaai.v32i1.11810