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Robust Consensus in Ranking Data Analysis: Definitions, Properties and Computational Issues

Morgane Goibert · ClĂ©ment Calauzènes · Ekhine IRUROZKI · Stephan Clemencon

Exhibit Hall 1 #803
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Abstract: As the issue of robustness in AI systems becomes vital, statistical learning techniques that are reliable even in presence of partly contaminated data have to be developed. Preference data, in the form of (complete) rankings in the simplest situations, are no exception and the demand for appropriate concepts and tools is all the more pressing given that technologies fed by or producing this type of data ($\textit{e.g.}$ search engines, recommending systems) are now massively deployed. However, the lack of vector space structure for the set of rankings ($\textit{i.e.}$ the symmetric group $\mathfrak{S}_n$) and the complex nature of statistics considered in ranking data analysis make the formulation of robustness objectives in this domain challenging. In this paper, we introduce notions of robustness, together with dedicated statistical methods, for $\textit{Consensus Ranking}$ the flagship problem in ranking data analysis, aiming at summarizing a probability distribution on $\mathfrak{S}_n$ by a $\textit{median}$ ranking. Precisely, we propose specific extensions of the popular concept of *breakdown point*, tailored to consensus ranking, and address the related computational issues. Beyond the theoretical contributions, the relevance of the approach proposed is supported by an experimental study.

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