A Parallel Double Greedy Algorithm for Submodular Maximization

4 Dec 2018  ·  Alina Ene, Huy L. Nguyen, Adrian Vladu ·

We study parallel algorithms for the problem of maximizing a non-negative submodular function. Our main result is an algorithm that achieves a nearly-optimal $1/2 -\epsilon$ approximation using $O(\log(1/\epsilon) / \epsilon)$ parallel rounds of function evaluations. Our algorithm is based on a continuous variant of the double greedy algorithm of Buchbinder et al. that achieves the optimal $1/2$ approximation in the sequential setting. Our algorithm applies more generally to the problem of maximizing a continuous diminishing-returns (DR) function.

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