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Neural Link Prediction with Walk Pooling

Liming Pan · Cheng Shi · Ivan Dokmanic

Keywords: [ link prediction ] [ random walk ] [ graph neural network ]


Graph neural networks achieve high accuracy in link prediction by jointly leveraging graph topology and node attributes. Topology, however, is represented indirectly; state-of-the-art methods based on subgraph classification label nodes with distance to the target link, so that, although topological information is present, it is tempered by pooling. This makes it challenging to leverage features like loops and motifs associated with network formation mechanisms. We propose a link prediction algorithm based on a new pooling scheme called WalkPool. WalkPool combines the expressivity of topological heuristics with the feature-learning ability of neural networks. It summarizes a putative link by random walk probabilities of adjacent paths. Instead of extracting transition probabilities from the original graph, it computes the transition matrix of a ``predictive'' latent graph by applying attention to learned features; this may be interpreted as feature-sensitive topology fingerprinting. WalkPool can leverage unsupervised node features or be combined with GNNs and trained end-to-end. It outperforms state-of-the-art methods on all common link prediction benchmarks, both homophilic and heterophilic, with and without node attributes. Applying WalkPool to a set of unsupervised GNNs significantly improves prediction accuracy, suggesting that it may be used as a general-purpose graph pooling scheme.

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