Learning Smooth and Fair Representations

Xavier Gitiaux · Huzefa Rangwala

[ Abstract ] [ Livestream: Visit Fairness / Privacy / Decision Making / Data Cleaning ]
Thu 15 Apr 12:15 p.m. — 12:30 p.m. PDT

This paper explores the statistical properties of fair representation learning, a pre-processing method that preemptively removes the correlations between features and sensitive attributes by mapping features to a fair representation space. We show that the demographic parity of a representation can be certified from a finite sample if and only if the mapping guarantees that the chi-squared mutual information between features and representations is finite for distributions of the features. Empirically, we find that smoothing representations with an additive Gaussian white noise provides generalization guarantees of fairness certificates, which improves upon existing fair representation learning approaches.

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