Abstract: In domain generalization, multiple labeled non-independent and non-identically distributed source domains are available during training while neither the data nor the labels of target domains are. Currently, learning so-called domain invariant representations (DIRs) is the prevalent approach to domain generalization. In this work, we define DIRs employed by existing works in probabilistic terms and show that by learning DIRs, overly strict requirements are imposed concerning the invariance. Particularly, DIRs aim to perfectly align representations of different domains, i.e. their input distributions. This is, however, not necessary for good generalization to a target domain and may even dispose of valuable classification information. We propose to learn so-called hypothesis invariant representations (HIRs), which relax the invariance assumptions by merely aligning posteriors, instead of aligning representations. We report experimental results on public domain generalization datasets to show that learning HIRs is more effective than learning DIRs. In fact, our approach can even compete with approaches using prior knowledge about domains.
Authors: Ziqi Wang, Marco Loog, Jan van Gemert (Delft University of Technology, University of Copenhagen)