Learning with Complex Loss Functions and Constraints


Harikrishna Narasimhan ;
Proceedings of the Twenty-First International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, PMLR 84:1646-1654, 2018.


We develop a general approach for solving constrained classification problems, where the loss and constraints are defined in terms of a general function of the confusion matrix. We are able to handle complex, non-linear loss functions such as the F-measure, G-mean or H-mean, and constraints ranging from budget limits, to constraints for fairness, to bounds on complex evaluation metrics. Our approach builds on the framework of Narasimhan et al. (2015) for unconstrained classification with complex losses, and reduces the constrained learning problem to a sequence of cost-sensitive learning tasks. We provide algorithms for two broad families of problems, involving convex and fractional-convex losses, subject to convex constraints. Our algorithms are statistically consistent, generalize an existing approach for fair classification, and readily apply to multiclass problems. Experiments on a variety of tasks demonstrate the efficacy of our methods.

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