Apurv Verma


Measuring Fairness of Text Classifiers via Prediction Sensitivity
Satyapriya Krishna | Rahul Gupta | Apurv Verma | Jwala Dhamala | Yada Pruksachatkun | Kai-Wei Chang
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

With the rapid growth in language processing applications, fairness has emerged as an important consideration in data-driven solutions. Although various fairness definitions have been explored in the recent literature, there is lack of consensus on which metrics most accurately reflect the fairness of a system. In this work, we propose a new formulation – accumulated prediction sensitivity, which measures fairness in machine learning models based on the model’s prediction sensitivity to perturbations in input features. The metric attempts to quantify the extent to which a single prediction depends on a protected attribute, where the protected attribute encodes the membership status of an individual in a protected group. We show that the metric can be theoretically linked with a specific notion of group fairness (statistical parity) and individual fairness. It also correlates well with humans’ perception of fairness. We conduct experiments on two text classification datasets – Jigsaw Toxicity, and Bias in Bios, and evaluate the correlations between metrics and manual annotations on whether the model produced a fair outcome. We observe that the proposed fairness metric based on prediction sensitivity is statistically significantly more correlated with human annotation than the existing counterfactual fairness metric.

Mitigating Gender Bias in Distilled Language Models via Counterfactual Role Reversal
Umang Gupta | Jwala Dhamala | Varun Kumar | Apurv Verma | Yada Pruksachatkun | Satyapriya Krishna | Rahul Gupta | Kai-Wei Chang | Greg Ver Steeg | Aram Galstyan
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2022

Language models excel at generating coherent text, and model compression techniques such as knowledge distillation have enabled their use in resource-constrained settings. However, these models can be biased in multiple ways, including the unfounded association of male and female genders with gender-neutral professions. Therefore, knowledge distillation without any fairness constraints may preserve or exaggerate the teacher model’s biases onto the distilled model. To this end, we present a novel approach to mitigate gender disparity in text generation by learning a fair model during knowledge distillation. We propose two modifications to the base knowledge distillation based on counterfactual role reversal—modifying teacher probabilities and augmenting the training set. We evaluate gender polarity across professions in open-ended text generated from the resulting distilled and finetuned GPT–2 models and demonstrate a substantial reduction in gender disparity with only a minor compromise in utility. Finally, we observe that language models that reduce gender polarity in language generation do not improve embedding fairness or downstream classification fairness.

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Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Trustworthy Natural Language Processing (TrustNLP 2022)
Apurv Verma | Yada Pruksachatkun | Kai-Wei Chang | Aram Galstyan | Jwala Dhamala | Yang Trista Cao
Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Trustworthy Natural Language Processing (TrustNLP 2022)