SVGD as a kernelized Wasserstein gradient flow of the chi-squared divergence

Stein Variational Gradient Descent (SVGD), a popular sampling algorithm, is often described as the kernelized gradient flow for the Kullback-Leibler divergence in the geometry of optimal transport. We introduce a new perspective on SVGD that instead views SVGD as the (kernelized) gradient flow of the chi-squared divergence which, we show, exhibits a strong form of uniform exponential ergodicity under conditions as weak as a Poincar\'e inequality... (read more)

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