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Fair Federated Medical Image Segmentation via Client Contribution Estimation

Meirui Jiang · Holger R. Roth · Wenqi Li · Dong Yang · Can Zhao · Vishwesh Nath · Daguang Xu · Qi Dou · Ziyue Xu

West Building Exhibit Halls ABC 376


How to ensure fairness is an important topic in federated learning (FL). Recent studies have investigated how to reward clients based on their contribution (collaboration fairness), and how to achieve uniformity of performance across clients (performance fairness). Despite achieving progress on either one, we argue that it is critical to consider them together, in order to engage and motivate more diverse clients joining FL to derive a high-quality global model. In this work, we propose a novel method to optimize both types of fairness simultaneously. Specifically, we propose to estimate client contribution in gradient and data space. In gradient space, we monitor the gradient direction differences of each client with respect to others. And in data space, we measure the prediction error on client data using an auxiliary model. Based on this contribution estimation, we propose a FL method, federated training via contribution estimation (FedCE), i.e., using estimation as global model aggregation weights. We have theoretically analyzed our method and empirically evaluated it on two real-world medical datasets. The effectiveness of our approach has been validated with significant performance improvements, better collaboration fairness, better performance fairness, and comprehensive analytical studies.

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