Keywords: Conformal prediction, meta-learning, cross-validation-based conformal prediction, distribution-free prediction
TL;DR: This paper introduces a novel meta-learning solution for conformal prediction that reduces the set prediction size, while preserving the formal per-task calibration guarantees.
Abstract: Conventional frequentist learning is known to yield poorly calibrated models that fail to reliably quantify the uncertainty of their decisions. Bayesian learning can improve calibration, but formal guarantees apply only under restrictive assumptions about correct model specification. Conformal prediction (CP) offers a general framework for the design of set predictors with calibration guarantees that hold regardless of the underlying data generation mechanism. However, when training data are limited, CP tends to produce large, and hence uninformative, predicted sets. This paper introduces a novel meta-learning solution that aims at reducing the set prediction size. Unlike prior work, the proposed meta-learning scheme, referred to as meta-XB, (i) builds on cross-validation-based CP, rather than the less efficient validation-based CP; and (ii) preserves formal per-task calibration guarantees, rather than less stringent task-marginal guarantees.