L-Cumulants, L-Cumulant Embeddings and Algebraic Statis- Tics

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Piotr Zwiernik


Focusing on the discrete probabilistic setting we generalize the combinatorial de nition of cumulants to L-cumulants. This generalization keeps all the desired properties of the classical cumulants like semi-invariance and vanishing for independent blocks of random variables. These properties make L-cumulants useful for the algebraic analysis of statistical models. We illustrate this for general Markov models and hidden Markov processes in the case when the hidden process is binary. The main motivation of this work is to understand cumulant-like coordinates in algebraic statistics and to give a more insightful explanation why tree cumulants give such an elegant description of binary hidden tree models. Moreover, we argue that L-cumulants can be used in the analysis of certain classical algebraic varieties.

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