Abstract:
Although the concept of d-separation was originally defined for directed acyclic graphs (see Pearl 1988), there is a natural extension of he concept to directed cyclic graphs. When exactly the same set of d-separation relations hold in two directed graphs, no matter whether respectively cyclic or acyclic, we say that they are Markov equivalent. In other words, when two directed cyclic graphs are Markov equivalent, the set of distributions that satisfy a natural extension of the Global Directed Markov condition (Lauritzen et al. 1990) is exactly the same for each graph. There is an obvious exponential (in the number of vertices) time algorithm for deciding Markov equivalence of two directed cyclic graphs; simply chech all of the d-separation relations in each graph. In this paper I state a theorem that gives necessary and sufficient conditions for the Markov equivalence of two directed cyclic graphs, where each of the conditions can be checked in polynomial time. Hence, the theorem can be easily adapted into a polynomial time algorithm for deciding the Markov equivalence of two directed cyclic graphs. Although space prohibits inclusion of correctness proofs, they are fully described in Richardson (1994b).

Abstract:
Directed acyclic graphs have been used fruitfully to represent causal strucures (Pearl 1988). However, in the social sciences and elsewhere models are often used which correspond both causally and statistically to directed graphs with directed cycles (Spirtes 1995). Pearl (1993) discussed predicting the effects of intervention in models of this kind, so-called linear non-recursive structural equation models. This raises the question of whether it is possible to make inferences about causal structure with cycles, form sample data. In particular do there exist general, informative, feasible and reliable precedures for inferring causal structure from conditional independence relations among variables in a sample generated by an unknown causal structure? In this paper I present a discovery algorithm that is correct in the large sample limit, given commonly (but often implicitly) made plausible assumptions, and which provides information about the existence or non-existence of causal pathways from one variable to another. The algorithm is polynomial on sparse graphs.

Abstract:
Acyclic directed mixed graphs, also known as semi-Markov models represent the conditional independence structure induced on an observed margin by a DAG model with latent variables. In this paper we present a factorization criterion for these models that is equivalent to the global Markov property given by (the natural extension of) d-separation.

Abstract:
In graphical modelling, a bi-directed graph encodes marginal independences among random variables that are identified with the vertices of the graph. We show how to transform a bi-directed graph into a maximal ancestral graph that (i) represents the same independence structure as the original bi-directed graph, and (ii) minimizes the number of arrowheads among all ancestral graphs satisfying (i). Here the number of arrowheads of an ancestral graph is the number of directed edges plus twice the number of bi-directed edges. In Gaussian models, this construction can be used for more efficient iterative maximization of the likelihood function and to determine when maximum likelihood estimates are equal to empirical counterparts.

Abstract:
Log-linear models are a classical tool for the analysis of contingency tables. In particular, the subclass of graphical log-linear models provides a general framework for modelling conditional independences. However, with the exception of special structures, marginal independence hypotheses cannot be accommodated by these traditional models. Focusing on binary variables, we present a model class that provides a framework for modelling marginal independences in contingency tables. The approach taken is graphical and draws on analogies to multivariate Gaussian models for marginal independence. For the graphical model representation we use bi-directed graphs, which are in the tradition of path diagrams. We show how the models can be parameterized in a simple fashion, and how maximum likelihood estimation can be performed using a version of the Iterated Conditional Fitting algorithm. Finally we consider combining these models with symmetry restrictions.

Abstract:
This is the Proceedings of the Twenty-Second Conference on Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence, which was held in Cambridge, MA, July 13 - 16 2006.

Abstract:
Pearls concept OF a d - connecting path IS one OF the foundations OF the modern theory OF graphical models : the absence OF a d - connecting path IN a DAG indicates that conditional independence will hold IN ANY distribution factorising according TO that graph. IN this paper we show that IN singly - connected Gaussian DAGs it IS possible TO USE the form OF a d - connection TO obtain qualitative information about the strength OF conditional dependence.More precisely, the squared partial correlations BETWEEN two given variables, conditioned ON different subsets may be partially ordered BY examining the relationship BETWEEN the d - connecting path AND the SET OF variables conditioned upon.

Abstract:
Graphical models with bi-directed edges (<->) represent marginal independence: the absence of an edge between two vertices indicates that the corresponding variables are marginally independent. In this paper, we consider maximum likelihood estimation in the case of continuous variables with a Gaussian joint distribution, sometimes termed a covariance graph model. We present a new fitting algorithm which exploits standard regression techniques and establish its convergence properties. Moreover, we contrast our procedure to existing estimation methods.

Abstract:
Ancestral graph models, introduced by Richardson and Spirtes (2002), generalize both Markov random fields and Bayesian networks to a class of graphs with a global Markov property that is closed under conditioning and marginalization. By design, ancestral graphs encode precisely the conditional independence structures that can arise from Bayesian networks with selection and unobserved (hidden/latent) variables. Thus, ancestral graph models provide a potentially very useful framework for exploratory model selection when unobserved variables might be involved in the data-generating process but no particular hidden structure can be specified. In this paper, we present the Iterative Conditional Fitting (ICF) algorithm for maximum likelihood estimation in Gaussian ancestral graph models. The name reflects that in each step of the procedure a conditional distribution is estimated, subject to constraints, while a marginal distribution is held fixed. This approach is in duality to the well-known Iterative Proportional Fitting algorithm, in which marginal distributions are fitted while conditional distributions are held fixed.

Abstract:
This issue of Statistical Science draws its inspiration from the work of James M. Robins. Jon Wellner, the Editor at the time, asked the two of us to edit a special issue that would highlight the research topics studied by Robins and the breadth and depth of Robins' contributions. Between the two of us, we have collaborated closely with Jamie for nearly 40 years. We agreed to edit this issue because we recognized that we were among the few in a position to relate the trajectory of his research career to date.