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A new variable selection approach using Random Forests

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  • Hapfelmeier, A.
  • Ulm, K.

Abstract

Random Forests are frequently applied as they achieve a high prediction accuracy and have the ability to identify informative variables. Several approaches for variable selection have been proposed to combine and intensify these qualities. An extensive review of the corresponding literature led to the development of a new approach that is based on the theoretical framework of permutation tests and meets important statistical properties. A comparison to another eight popular variable selection methods in three simulation studies and four real data applications indicated that: the new approach can also be used to control the test-wise and family-wise error rate, provides a higher power to distinguish relevant from irrelevant variables and leads to models which are located among the very best performing ones. In addition, it is equally applicable to regression and classification problems.

Suggested Citation

  • Hapfelmeier, A. & Ulm, K., 2013. "A new variable selection approach using Random Forests," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 50-69.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:csdana:v:60:y:2013:i:c:p:50-69
    DOI: 10.1016/j.csda.2012.09.020
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Strobl, Carolin & Boulesteix, Anne-Laure & Augustin, Thomas, 2007. "Unbiased split selection for classification trees based on the Gini Index," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 483-501, September.
    2. Archer, Kellie J. & Kimes, Ryan V., 2008. "Empirical characterization of random forest variable importance measures," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 2249-2260, January.
    3. van Wieringen, Wessel N. & Kun, David & Hampel, Regina & Boulesteix, Anne-Laure, 2009. "Survival prediction using gene expression data: A review and comparison," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 53(5), pages 1590-1603, March.
    4. Willi Sauerbrei, 1999. "The Use of Resampling Methods to Simplify Regression Models in Medical Statistics," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series C, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 48(3), pages 313-329.
    5. Harrison, David Jr. & Rubinfeld, Daniel L., 1978. "Hedonic housing prices and the demand for clean air," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 81-102, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:eneeco:v:76:y:2018:i:c:p:228-256 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Fellinghauer, Bernd & B├╝hlmann, Peter & Ryffel, Martin & von Rhein, Michael & Reinhardt, Jan D., 2013. "Stable graphical model estimation with Random Forests for discrete, continuous, and mixed variables," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 132-152.
    3. Ingrida Vaiciulyte & Zivile Kalsyte & Leonidas Sakalauskas & Darius Plikynas, 2017. "Assessment of market reaction on the share performance on the basis of its visualization in 2D space," Journal of Business Economics and Management, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(2), pages 309-318, March.
    4. Hapfelmeier, A. & Ulm, K., 2014. "Variable selection by Random Forests using data with missing values," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 129-139.
    5. Edward Gage & David Cooper, 2015. "The Influence of Land Cover, Vertical Structure, and Socioeconomic Factors on Outdoor Water Use in a Western US City," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 29(10), pages 3877-3890, August.
    6. repec:spr:advdac:v:12:y:2018:i:4:d:10.1007_s11634-016-0276-4 is not listed on IDEAS

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