A GNN-Based Architecture for Group Detection from Spatio-Temporal Trajectory Data

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Abstract

Detecting and analyzing group behavior from spatio-temporal trajectories is an interesting topic in various domains, such as autonomous driving, urban computing, and social sciences. This paper revisits the group detection problem from spatio-temporal trajectories and proposes “WavenetNRI”, a graph neural network (GNN) based method. The proposed WavenetNRI extends the previously proposed neural relational inference (NRI) method (an unsupervised learning approach for inferring interactions from observational data) in two directions: (1) symmetric edge features and edge updating processes are applied to generate symmetric edge representations corresponding to the symmetric binary group relationships; (2) a gated dilated residual causal convolutional (GD-RCC) block is adopted to capture both short and long dependency of the edge feature sequences. We evaluated the performance of the proposed model on three simulation datasets and three real-world pedestrian datasets, using the Group Mitre metric to measure the quality of the predicted groups. We compared WavenetNRI with four baseline methods, including two clustering-based and two classification-based methods. In these experiments, NRI and WavenetNRI outperformed all other baselines on the group-interaction simulation datasets, while NRI performed slightly better than WavenetNRI. On the pedestrian datasets, the WavenetNRI outperformed other classification-based baselines. However, it did not compete against the clustering-based methods. Our ablation study showed that while both proposed changes cannot be effective at the same time, either of them can improve the performance of the original NRI on one dataset type.