We study the problem of estimating a temporally varying coefficient and varying structure (VCVS) graphical model underlying data collected over a period of time, such as social states of interacting individuals or microarray expression profiles of gene networks, as opposed to i.i.d. data from an invariant model widely considered in current literature of structural estimation. In particular, we consider the scenario in which the model evolves in a piece-wise constant fashion. We propose a procedure that estimates the structure of a graphical model by minimizing the temporally smoothed L1 penalized regression, which allows jointly estimating the partition boundaries of the VCVS model and the coefficient of the sparse precision matrix on each block of the partition. A highly scalable proximal gradient method is proposed to solve the resultant convex optimization problem; and the conditions for sparsistent estimation and the convergence rate of both the partition boundaries and the network structure are established for the first time for such estimators.
"Estimating networks with jumps." Electron. J. Statist. 6 2069 - 2106, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1214/12-EJS739