RSFAS Seminar Series – Dr Leah South

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Speaker: Dr Leah South

Institution: Queensland University of Technology

Venue: CBE LT1

Date/Time: 11:00AM, Thursday 18 August 2022

Title: Monte Carlo variance reduction using Stein operators Abstract: This talk will focus on two new methods for estimating posterior expectations when the derivatives of the log posterior are available. The proposed methods are in a class of estimators that use Stein operators to generate control variates or control functionals. The first method [1], referred to as semi-exact control functionals (SECF), is based on control functionals and Sard’s approach to numerical integration. The use of Sard’s approach ensures that our control functionals are exact on all polynomials up to a fixed degree in the Bernstein-von-Mises limit. The second method [1] applies regularisation to improve the performance of popular Stein-based control variates for high-dimensional Monte Carlo integration. Several Bayesian inference examples will be used to illustrate the potential for reduction in mean square error.

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