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Assessing and Remedying Coverage for a Given Dataset

10/15/2018
by   Abolfazl Asudeh, et al.
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Data analysis impacts virtually every aspect of our society today. Often, this analysis is performed on an existing dataset, possibly collected through a process that the data scientists had limited control over. The existing data analyzed may not include the complete universe, but it is expected to cover the diversity of items in the universe. Lack of adequate coverage in the dataset can result in undesirable outcomes such as biased decisions and algorithmic racism, as well as create vulnerabilities such as opening up room for adversarial attacks. In this paper, we assess the coverage of a given dataset over multiple categorical attributes. We first provide efficient techniques for traversing the combinatorial explosion of attribute value combinations to identify any regions of attribute space not adequately covered by the data. Then, we determine the least amount of additional data that must be obtained to resolve this lack of adequate coverage. We confirm the value of our proposal through both theoretical analyses and comprehensive experiments on real data.

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