Reconstructing dynamical networks via feature ranking

Marc G. Leguia, Zoran Levnajic, Ljupco Todorovski, Bernard Zenko

Empirical data on real complex systems are becoming increasingly available. Parallel to this is the need for new methods of reconstructing (inferring) the topology of networks from time-resolved observations of their node-dynamics. The methods based on physical insights often rely on strong assumptions about the properties and dynamics of the scrutinized network. Here, we use the insights from machine learning to design a new method of network reconstruction that essentially makes no such assumptions. Specifically, we interpret the available trajectories (data) as features, and use two independent feature ranking approaches -- Random forest and RReliefF -- to rank the importance of each node for predicting the value of each other node, which yields the reconstructed adjacency matrix. We show that our method is fairly robust to coupling strength, system size, trajectory length and noise. We also find that the reconstruction quality strongly depends on the dynamical regime.

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