Design and Analysis of Bipartite Experiments under a Linear Exposure-Response Model

03/11/2021 ∙ by Christopher Harshaw, et al. ∙ 0

The bipartite experimental framework is a recently proposed causal setting, where a bipartite graph links two distinct types of units: units that receive treatment and units whose outcomes are of interest to the experimenter. Often motivated by market experiments, the bipartite experimental framework has been used for example to investigate the causal effects of supply-side changes on demand-side behavior. Similar to settings with interference and other violations of the stable unit treatment value assumption (SUTVA), additional assumptions on potential outcomes must be made for valid inference. In this paper, we consider the problem of estimating the average treatment effect in the bipartite experimental framework under a linear exposure-response model. We propose the Exposure Reweighted Linear (ERL) Estimator, an unbiased linear estimator of the average treatment effect in this setting. Furthermore, we present Exposure-Design, a cluster-based design which aims to increase the precision of the ERL estimator by realizing desirable exposure distributions. Finally, we demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed estimator and design on a publicly available Amazon user-item review graph.

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