Neural Processes with Stability

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 36 (NeurIPS 2023) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper


Huafeng Liu, Liping Jing, Jian Yu


Unlike traditional statistical models depending on hand-specified priors, neural processes (NPs) have recently emerged as a class of powerful neural statistical models that combine the strengths of neural networks and stochastic processes. NPs can define a flexible class of stochastic processes well suited for highly non-trivial functions by encoding contextual knowledge into the function space. However, noisy context points introduce challenges to the algorithmic stability that small changes in training data may significantly change the models and yield lower generalization performance. In this paper, we provide theoretical guidelines for deriving stable solutions with high generalization by introducing the notion of algorithmic stability into NPs, which can be flexible to work with various NPs and achieves less biased approximation with theoretical guarantees. To illustrate the superiority of the proposed model, we perform experiments on both synthetic and real-world data, and the results demonstrate that our approach not only helps to achieve more accurate performance but also improves model robustness.