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Consistency of Robust Kernel Density Estimators

Robert Vandermeulen, Clayton Scott
;
JMLR W&CP 30 : 568–591, 2013

Abstract

The kernel density estimator (KDE) based on a radial positive-semidefinite kernel may be viewed as a sample mean in a reproducing kernel Hilbert space. This mean can be viewed as the solution of a least squares problem in that space. Replacing the squared loss with a robust loss yields a robust kernel density estimator (RKDE). Previous work has shown that RKDEs are weighted kernel density estimators which have desirable robustness properties. In this paper we establish asymptotic \(L^1\) consistency of the RKDE for a class of losses and show that the RKDE converges with the same rate on bandwidth required for the traditional KDE. We also present a novel proof of the consistency of the traditional KDE.

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