Fuzzy spectral clustering by PCCA+: application to Markov state models and data classification

Regular Article


Given a row-stochastic matrix describing pairwise similarities between data objects, spectral clustering makes use of the eigenvectors of this matrix to perform dimensionality reduction for clustering in fewer dimensions. One example from this class of algorithms is the Robust Perron Cluster Analysis (PCCA+), which delivers a fuzzy clustering. Originally developed for clustering the state space of Markov chains, the method became popular as a versatile tool for general data classification problems. The robustness of PCCA+, however, cannot be explained by previous perturbation results, because the matrices in typical applications do not comply with the two main requirements: reversibility and nearly decomposability. We therefore demonstrate in this paper that PCCA+ always delivers an optimal fuzzy clustering for nearly uncoupled, not necessarily reversible, Markov chains with transition states.


Perron eigenvalues Perturbation theory Molecular simulations 

Mathematics Subject Classification (2000)

60J10 62H30 65K05 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Zuse Institute Berlin (ZIB)BerlinGermany

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