Causal Modeling and Machine Learning
Prof Kun ZHANG

Speaker Event details

Prof Kun ZHANG
Assistant Professor
Carnegie Mellon University




6 July 2018, Friday

10.30am 11.30am

Please take note of the new venue location
Seminar Room 1-3, Level 1
School of Accountancy
Singapore Management University
60 Stamford Road
Singapore 178900

We look forward to seeing you at this research seminar.

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Can we find the causal direction between two variables? How can we make optimal predictions in the presence of distribution shift? We are often faced with such causal modeling or prediction problems. Recently, with the rapid accumulation of huge volumes of data, both causal discovery, i.e. learning causal information from purely observational data, and machine learning are seeing exciting opportunities as well as great challenges. This talk will be focusing on recent advances in causal discovery and how causal information facilitates understanding and solving certain problems of learning from heterogeneous data. In particular, I will talk about basic approaches to causal discovery and address practical issues in causal discovery, including nonstationarity or heterogeneity of the data and the presence of measurement error. Finally, I will discuss why and how underlying causal knowledge helps in learning from heterogeneous data when the i.i.d. assumption is dropped, with transfer learning as a particular example.

About the speaker

Kun Zhang is an assistant professor in the philosophy department and an affiliate faculty in the machine learning department of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), USA, as well as a senior research scientist at Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany. Before joining CMU, he was a lead scientist at Information Sciences Institute of University of Southern California for one year. His research interests lie in machine learning and artificial intelligence, especially in causal discovery and causality-based machine learning. He has being serving as an area chair or senior program committee member for many conferences in machine learning or artificial intelligence, including UAI, ICML, NIPS, AAAI, IJCAI, AIStats, and ICDM, and as an associate editor for several journals. He has organized various academic activities to foster interdisciplinary research in causality.


This research is supported by the National Research Foundation, Prime Minister's Office, Singapore under its International Research Centres in Singapore Funding Initiative.

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