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# Efficiently Learning One-Hidden-Layer ReLU Networks via SchurPolynomials

*Proceedings of Thirty Seventh Conference on Learning Theory*, PMLR 247:1364-1378, 2024.

#### Abstract

We study the problem of PAC learning a linear combination of $k$ ReLU activations under the standard Gaussian distribution on $\mathbb{R}^d$ with respect to the square loss. Our main result is an efficient algorithm for this learning task with sample and computational complexity $(dk/\epsilon)^{O(k)}$, where $\epsilon>0$ is the target accuracy. Prior work had given an algorithm for this problem with complexity $(dk/\epsilon)^{h(k)}$, where the function $h(k)$ scales super-polynomially in $k$. Interestingly, the complexity of our algorithm is near-optimal within the class of Correlational Statistical Query algorithms. At a high-level, our algorithm uses tensor decomposition to identify a subspace such that all the $O(k)$-order moments are small in the orthogonal directions. Its analysis makes essential use of the theory of Schur polynomials to show that the higher-moment error tensors are small given that the lower-order ones are.