A Clearer View on Fairness: Visual and Formal Representations for Comparative Analysis


  • Julian Alfredo Mendez
  • Timotheus Kampik
  • Andrea Aler Tubella
  • Virginia Dignum




The opaque nature of machine learning systems has raised concerns about whether these systems can guarantee fairness. Furthermore, ensuring fair decision making requires the consideration of multiple perspectives on fairness.At the moment, there is no agreement on the definitions of fairness, achieving shared interpretations is difficult, and there is no unified formal language to describe them. Current definitions are implicit in the operationalization of systems, making their comparison difficult.In this paper, we propose a framework for specifying formal representations of fairness that allows instantiating, visualizing, and comparing different interpretations of fairness. Our framework provides a meta-model for comparative analysis. We present several examples that consider different definitions of fairness, as well as an open-source implementation that uses the object-oriented functional language Soda.