Efficient Uncertainty Quantification and Reduction for Over-Parameterized Neural Networks

Published: 21 Sept 2023, Last Modified: 20 Dec 2023NeurIPS 2023 posterEveryoneRevisionsBibTeX
Keywords: frequentist uncertainty, epistemic uncertainty, procedural variability, confidence intervals, batching, cheap bootstrap
Abstract: Uncertainty quantification (UQ) is important for reliability assessment and enhancement of machine learning models. In deep learning, uncertainties arise not only from data, but also from the training procedure that often injects substantial noises and biases. These hinder the attainment of statistical guarantees and, moreover, impose computational challenges on UQ due to the need for repeated network retraining. Building upon the recent neural tangent kernel theory, we create statistically guaranteed schemes to principally \emph{characterize}, and \emph{remove}, the uncertainty of over-parameterized neural networks with very low computation effort. In particular, our approach, based on what we call a procedural-noise-correcting (PNC) predictor, removes the procedural uncertainty by using only \emph{one} auxiliary network that is trained on a suitably labeled dataset, instead of many retrained networks employed in deep ensembles. Moreover, by combining our PNC predictor with suitable light-computation resampling methods, we build several approaches to construct asymptotically exact-coverage confidence intervals using as low as four trained networks without additional overheads.
Supplementary Material: pdf
Submission Number: 3085