This was part of Expressing and Exploiting Structure in Modeling, Theory, and Computation with Gaussian Processes

Maximum likelihood estimation for Gaussian processes under inequality constraints

Francois Bachoc, Institut de Mathématiques de Toulouse

Monday, August 29, 2022


We consider covariance parameter estimation for a Gaussian process under inequality constraints (boundedness, monotonicity or convexity) in fixed-domain asymptotics. We address the estimation of the variance parameter and the estimation of the microergodic parameter of the Matérn and Wendland covariance functions. First, we show that the (unconstrained) maximum likelihood estimator has the same asymptotic distribution, unconditionally and conditionally to the fact that the Gaussian process satisfies the inequality constraints. Then, we study the recently suggested constrained maximum likelihood estimator. We show that it has the same asymptotic distribution as the (unconstrained) maximum likelihood estimator. In addition, we show in simulations that the constrained maximum likelihood estimator is generally more accurate on finite samples.