MedLDA: A General Framework of Maximum Margin Supervised Topic Models

Research paper by Jun Zhu, Amr Ahmed, Eric P. Xing

Indexed on: 30 Dec '09Published on: 30 Dec '09Published in: Statistics - Machine Learning


Supervised topic models utilize document's side information for discovering predictive low dimensional representations of documents. Existing models apply the likelihood-based estimation. In this paper, we present a general framework of max-margin supervised topic models for both continuous and categorical response variables. Our approach, the maximum entropy discrimination latent Dirichlet allocation (MedLDA), utilizes the max-margin principle to train supervised topic models and estimate predictive topic representations that are arguably more suitable for prediction tasks. The general principle of MedLDA can be applied to perform joint max-margin learning and maximum likelihood estimation for arbitrary topic models, directed or undirected, and supervised or unsupervised, when the supervised side information is available. We develop efficient variational methods for posterior inference and parameter estimation, and demonstrate qualitatively and quantitatively the advantages of MedLDA over likelihood-based topic models on movie review and 20 Newsgroups data sets.