Reliable Estimation of Individual Treatment Effect with Causal Information Bottleneck

Sungyub Kim, Yongsu Baek, Sung Ju Hwang, Eunho Yang

Estimating individual level treatment effects (ITE) from observational data is a challenging and important area in causal machine learning and is commonly considered in diverse mission-critical applications. In this paper, we propose an information theoretic approach in order to find more reliable representations for estimating ITE. We leverage the Information Bottleneck (IB) principle, which addresses the trade-off between conciseness and predictive power of representation. With the introduction of an extended graphical model for causal information bottleneck, we encourage the independence between the learned representation and the treatment type. We also introduce an additional form of a regularizer from the perspective of understanding ITE in the semi-supervised learning framework to ensure more reliable representations. Experimental results show that our model achieves the state-of-the-art results and exhibits more reliable prediction performances with uncertainty information on real-world datasets.

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