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Score-based Generative Neural Networks for Large-Scale Optimal Transport

Grady Daniels · Tyler Maunu · Paul Hand

Keywords: [ Deep Learning ] [ Optimization ] [ Optimal Transport ] [ Generative Model ]


We consider the fundamental problem of sampling the optimal transport coupling between given source and target distributions. In certain cases, the optimal transport plan takes the form of a one-to-one mapping from the source support to the target support, but learning or even approximating such a map is computationally challenging for large and high-dimensional datasets due to the high cost of linear programming routines and an intrinsic curse of dimensionality. We study instead the Sinkhorn problem, a regularized form of optimal transport whose solutions are couplings between the source and the target distribution. We introduce a novel framework for learning the Sinkhorn coupling between two distributions in the form of a score-based generative model. Conditioned on source data, our procedure iterates Langevin Dynamics to sample target data according to the regularized optimal coupling. Key to this approach is a neural network parametrization of the Sinkhorn problem, and we prove convergence of gradient descent with respect to network parameters in this formulation. We demonstrate its empirical success on a variety of large scale optimal transport tasks.

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