Adaptive Cluster Ensemble Selection

Cluster ensembles generate a large number of different clustering solutions and combine them into a more robust and accurate consensus clustering. On forming the ensembles, the literature has suggested that higher diversity among ensemble members produces higher performance gain. In contrast, some studies also indicated that medium diversity leads to the best performing ensembles. Such contradicting observations suggest that different data, with varying characteristics, may require different treatments. We empirically investigate this issue by examining the behavior of cluster ensembles on benchmark data sets. This leads to a novel framework that selects ensemble members for each data set based on its own characteristics. Our framework first generates a diverse set of solutions and combines them into a consensus partition P*. Based on the diversity between the ensemble members and P*, a subset of ensemble members is selected and combined to obtain the final output. We evaluate the proposed method on benchmark data sets and the results show that the proposed method can significantly improve the clustering performance, often by a substantial margin. In some cases, we were able to produce final solutions that significantly outperform even the best ensemble members.

Javad Azimi, Xiaoli Fern