Graph learning and its applications : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science, Massey University, Albany, Auckland, New Zealand

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Since graph features consider the correlations between two data points to provide high-order information, i.e., more complex correlations than the low-order information which considers the correlations in the individual data, they have attracted much attention in real applications. The key of graph feature extraction is the graph construction. Previous study has demonstrated that the quality of the graph usually determines the effectiveness of the graph feature. However, the graph is usually constructed from the original data which often contain noise and redundancy. To address the above issue, graph learning is designed to iteratively adjust the graph and model parameters so that improving the quality of the graph and outputting optimal model parameters. As a result, graph learning has become a very popular research topic in traditional machine learning and deep learning. Although previous graph learning methods have been applied in many fields by adding a graph regularization to the objective function, they still have some issues to be addressed. This thesis focuses on the study of graph learning aiming to overcome the drawbacks in previous methods for different applications. We list the proposed methods as follows. • We propose a traditional graph learning method under supervised learning to consider the robustness and the interpretability of graph learning. Specifically, we propose utilizing self-paced learning to assign important samples with large weights, conducting feature selection to remove redundant features, and learning a graph matrix from the low dimensional data of the original data to preserve the local structure of the data. As a consequence, both important samples and useful features are used to select support vectors in the SVM framework. • We propose a traditional graph learning method under semi-supervised learning to explore parameter-free fusion of graph learning. Specifically, we first employ the discrete wavelet transform and Pearson correlation coefficient to obtain multiple fully connected Functional Connectivity brain Networks (FCNs) for every subject, and then learn a sparsely connected FCN for every subject. Finally, the ℓ1-SVM is employed to learn the important features and conduct disease diagnosis. • We propose a deep graph learning method to consider graph fusion of graph learning. Specifically, we first employ the Simple Linear Iterative Clustering (SLIC) method to obtain multi-scale features for every image, and then design a new graph fusion method to fine-tune features of every scale. As a result, the multi-scale feature fine-tuning, graph learning, and feature learning are embedded into a unified framework. All proposed methods are evaluated on real-world data sets, by comparing to state-of-the-art methods. Experimental results demonstrate that our methods outperformed all comparison methods.
Listed in 2022 Dean's List of Exceptional Theses
Graph theory, Supervised learning (Machine learning), Deep learning (Machine learning), Machine learning, Graph algorithms, Dean's List of Exceptional Theses