Size of Interventional Markov Equivalence Classes in random DAG models

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Dmitriy Katz, Karthikeyan Shanmugam, Chandler Squires, Caroline Uhler ;
Proceedings of Machine Learning Research, PMLR 89:3234-3243, 2019.

Abstract

Directed acyclic graph (DAG) models are popular for capturing causal relationships. From observational and interventional data, a DAG model can only be determined up to its \emph{interventional Markov equivalence class} (I-MEC). We investigate the size of MECs for random DAG models generated by uniformly sampling and ordering an Erdős-Rényi graph. For constant density, we show that the expected $\log$ observational MEC size asymptotically (in the number of vertices) approaches a constant. We characterize I-MEC size in a similar fashion in the above settings with high precision. We show that the asymptotic expected number of interventions required to fully identify a DAG is a constant. These results are obtained by exploiting Meek rules and coupling arguments to provide sharp upper and lower bounds on the asymptotic quantities, which are then calculated numerically up to high precision. Our results have important consequences for experimental design of interventions and the development of algorithms for causal inference.

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