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Least Squares Model Averaging for Distributed Data

Haili Zhang, Zhaobo Liu, Guohua Zou; 24(215):1−59, 2023.


Divide and conquer algorithm is a common strategy applied in big data. Model averaging has the natural divide-and-conquer feature, but its theory has not been developed in big data scenarios. The goal of this paper is to fill this gap. We propose two divide-and-conquer-type model averaging estimators for linear models with distributed data. Under some regularity conditions, we show that the weights from Mallows model averaging criterion converge in L2 to the theoretically optimal weights minimizing the risk of the model averaging estimator. We also give the bounds of the in-sample and out-of-sample mean squared errors and prove the asymptotic optimality for the proposed model averaging estimators. Our conclusions hold even when the dimensions and the number of candidate models are divergent. Simulation results and a real airline data analysis illustrate that the proposed model averaging methods perform better than the commonly used model selection and model averaging methods in distributed data cases. Our approaches contribute to model averaging theory in distributed data and parallel computations, and can be applied in big data analysis to save time and reduce the computational burden.

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