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Towards Transparent Time Series Forecasting

Krzysztof Kacprzyk · Tennison Liu · Mihaela van der Schaar

Halle B #243
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Tue 7 May 1:45 a.m. PDT — 3:45 a.m. PDT


Transparent machine learning (ML) models are essential for ensuring interpretability and trustworthiness in decision-making systems, particularly in high-stakes domains such as healthcare, finance, and criminal justice. While transparent machine learning models have been proposed for classification and regression, time series forecasting presents some unique challenges for ensuring transparency. In particular, currently used bottom-up approaches that focus on the values of the time series at specific time points (usually regularly spaced) do not provide a holistic understanding of the entire time series. This limits the applicability of ML in many critical areas. To open up these domains for ML, we propose a top-down framework of bi-level transparency, which involves understanding the higher-level trends and the lower-level properties of the predicted time series. Applying this framework, we develop TIMEVIEW, a transparent ML model for time series forecasting based on static features, complemented with an interactive visualization tool. Through a series of experiments, we demonstrate the efficacy and interpretability of our approach, paving the way for more transparent and reliable applications of ML in various domains.

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