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Introduction to Model Governance in AI

  • Utsav Mishra
  • Jan 21, 2022
Introduction to Model Governance in AI title banner

There are different kinds of thoughts that cross our minds. Sometimes we think about how man-made the first aeroplane and at other times we just sit down thinking about the way medical science has progressed. 


But the thing that astonishes us the most at random times is the way technology has progressed in the past few years. When we see AI/ML technologies taking over the world by storm we realize that how amazing this technological revolution has been. 


We think about the time when they were they were introduced to us, humans, we didn’t believe in the concept. But soon a revolution began. A technological revolution, where top companies started getting technologically dependent on all the latest AI technologies in the market.


As this happened, we got new things to think about. We started thinking about how these companies manage the technologies they use. 


Nowadays, when most of these big brands and tech giants function on AI and ML, we can’t help but think about how these big brands manage their AI/ML resources and models. The answer we have with us now is not that complex as we thought of it.


The answer lies in the term called “AI Model Governance”. In this blog, we are going to talk about the same. So, let’s dive in and begin with the question that is asked the most.


What is AI Model Governance?


The complete process for how an organisation regulates access, implements policies, and tracks activity for models and their outputs is known as AI model governance. 


Effective model governance is the foundation for reducing risk to a company's bottom line and brand. Model governance is necessary to reduce organisational model risk in the case of an audit, but it encompasses much more than regulatory compliance.


Setting access restrictions for all models in production, versioning all models, producing the necessary software documentation, monitoring models and their outputs, and integrating machine learning with current IT policies are all part of complete and successful AI model governance.


Organizations that successfully adopt all components of AI model governance can gain fine-grained control and visibility into how models perform in production, as well as unlock operational efficiencies that help them achieve more with their AI investments. These organisations can tightly regulate model inputs and comprehend all the variables that can affect their outcomes by tracking, documenting, monitoring, versioning, and controlling access to all models.


Governance is especially important in models that include risk, such as financial portfolio management models. Because these models have such a direct impact on a person's or organization's finances, it's critical to understand the model's inputs and to spot and fix any biases or inaccurate learning. (Source)


Why is Model Governance Important?


Because Artificial Intelligence is such a new profession, there are still many inefficiencies that AI technology processes must overcome. 


Many of these inefficiencies are solved by strong model governance and management, which is why it is critical for enterprises to implement. Without model governance, AI initiatives may be missing out on potential value.


The risk side of model governance is particularly significant since it ensures that financial models are free of severe dangers. Because models are built to learn as they run, they can unintentionally learn biases if they are supplied with data that causes one, which can alter the model's decisions in the future.


Model governance enables the auditing and testing of models in production for speed, accuracy, and drift. This eliminates any difficulties with model bias or inaccuracy, allowing risky models to run smoothly.


One of the most important advantages of model governance is the ability to clearly define who owns a model as a firm evolves. Model governance, for example, can assist keep track of projects, how they run, and where you left off if someone worked on them years ago but has since left the firm.


(Also read: AIOps: Components and Use Cases)


How does Model Governance work?


Just as a financial model's governance follows its lifecycle, ML/AI models' governance should follow the data science lifecycle (DSLC): 


  • Manage

  • Develop

  • Deploy

  • Monitor


  1. Manage


Governance for the project should be created before a model is sketched out or data sources are selected. This includes determining who will work on the project, their responsibilities, and the technical resources they will require.


Model governance, unlike other types of governance that can be defined by an executive or board of directors, requires a collaborative effort. Representatives from each data science team, as well as key stakeholders, should be involved:


  • Legal: Someone from the legal department to create governance rules for government or regulatory needs, as well as any other areas of company governance, such as data usage regulations, nondisclosures, and so on.

  • Management: To supervise the effective use of resources, especially human resources, in order to guarantee that they are properly allocated.

  • Leaders of Teams: A lead data scientist, engineer, developer, analyst, or another member of each team should be present. They are in the best position to guarantee that procedures are followed correctly, that regular monitoring is performed, and that teams collaborate effectively.

  • Unit of Business: A business unit representative should be present to ensure that company objectives are reached, clients are well-served, costs are within budget, and untapped business prospects are addressed.


  1. Develop


All data sources should be logged as soon as the project begins. A version number should be assigned to a dataset that has been cleaned or otherwise updated. The same should be said for any algorithms that are used. 


Each model variation should be logged and kept so that it can be reused if necessary. Fortunately, if you're utilising an enterprise MLOps platform, this is all handled automatically, including the specific tools and people that worked on the model.


  1. Deploy


Model governance guarantees that when a model is deployed to a production environment, it is adequately inspected and tested to ensure that it is working as rapidly and correctly as planned and that it is not experiencing drift or otherwise failing to operate as expected. 


If the model has issues, it can be replaced with the most recent successful version that was delivered.


  1. Monitor


Once a model has been deployed in the real world and is being used by the people for whom it was created, it should be regularly monitored. 


For example, a model experiencing drift may output more or fewer data than expected, or it may overuse CPU or GPU resources. This is done automatically by Domino's Enterprise MLOps Platform, which will notify a team leader if a model fails to meet or exceeds pre-set parameters.


(Must read: AI in investing system)


Use Cases of Model Governance


Finance is the most obvious example of why model governance is important, but model governance is also required in other industries. 


Machine learning models are used in the banking industry for a variety of activities that can be done manually, such as credit rating, interest rate risk modelling, and derivatives pricing.


According to analytics insights, here are a few examples to illustrate the significance of model governance, 


  1. Credit Ratings


Credit rating and scoring models assist the finance/banking industry in making loan approval decisions by providing predictive analysis information on the likelihood of default or delinquency. It assists the bank in determining the appropriate risk costing for the loan.


  1. Modelling Interest Rate Risk


To assess risk, interest rate risk models monitor earnings exposure to a variety of market circumstances and rate changes. The model's goal is to give you an overview of the account's potential risks.


  1. Pricing of Derivatives


These models assess asset value by providing a mechanism for evaluating the cost of novel and complicated items in the absence of easily available market data. It is beneficial to both banks and investors in determining whether a company is worth investing in.

(Also read: How to improve credit score)

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