Finding Competence Regions in Domain Generalization

Published: 10 Jun 2023, Last Modified: 21 Jun 2023Accepted by TMLREveryoneRevisionsBibTeX
Abstract: We investigate a "learning to reject" framework to address the problem of silent failures in Domain Generalization (DG), where the test distribution differs from the training distribution. Assuming a mild distribution shift, we wish to accept out-of-distribution (OOD) data from a new domain whenever a model's estimated competence foresees trustworthy responses, instead of rejecting OOD data outright. Trustworthiness is then predicted via a proxy incompetence score that is tightly linked to the performance of a classifier. We present a comprehensive experimental evaluation of existing proxy scores as incompetence scores for classification and highlight the resulting trade-offs between rejection rate and accuracy gain. For comparability with prior work, we focus on standard DG benchmarks and consider the effect of measuring incompetence via different learned representations in a closed versus an open world setting. Our results suggest that increasing incompetence scores are indeed predictive of reduced accuracy, leading to significant improvements of the average accuracy below a suitable incompetence threshold. However, the scores are not yet good enough to allow for a favorable accuracy/rejection trade-off in all tested domains. Surprisingly, our results also indicate that classifiers optimized for DG robustness do not outperform a naive Empirical Risk Minimization (ERM) baseline in the competence region, that is, where test samples elicit low incompetence scores.
License: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Submission Length: Regular submission (no more than 12 pages of main content)
Assigned Action Editor: ~Hanwang_Zhang3
Submission Number: 975