Mathematical Programming

, Volume 169, Issue 2, pp 337–375 | Cite as

Global convergence rate analysis of unconstrained optimization methods based on probabilistic models

  • C. Cartis
  • K. ScheinbergEmail author
Full Length Paper Series A


We present global convergence rates for a line-search method which is based on random first-order models and directions whose quality is ensured only with certain probability. We show that in terms of the order of the accuracy, the evaluation complexity of such a method is the same as its counterparts that use deterministic accurate models; the use of probabilistic models only increases the complexity by a constant, which depends on the probability of the models being good. We particularize and improve these results in the convex and strongly convex case. We also analyze a probabilistic cubic regularization variant that allows approximate probabilistic second-order models and show improved complexity bounds compared to probabilistic first-order methods; again, as a function of the accuracy, the probabilistic cubic regularization bounds are of the same (optimal) order as for the deterministic case.


Line-search methods Cubic regularization methods Random models Global convergence analysis 

Mathematics Subject Classification

90C30 90C56 49M37 



We would like to thank Alexander Stolyar for helpful discussions on stochastic processes. We also would like to thank Zaikun Zhang, who was instrumental in helping us significantly simplify the analysis of the stochastic process in Sect. 2.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg and Mathematical Optimization Society 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mathematical InstituteUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  2. 2.Department of Industrial and Systems EngineeringLehigh UniversityBethlehemUSA

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