# AOH 1009 WARWICK.pdf - MUCM

AOH 1009 WARWICK.pdf - MUCM

Uncertainty in predictions from

process models

Tony O’Hagan, University of Sheffield

Warwick, October 2009 Slide 1

Outline

Uncertainty in models

Quantifying uncertainty

Example: dynamic global vegetation model

Reducing uncertainty

Example: atmospheric deposition model

Methods

Research directions

Dynamic models

MUCM

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 2

Computer models

In almost all fields of science, technology,

industry and policy making, people use

mechanistic models to describe complex realworld

processes

For understanding, prediction, control

There is a growing realisation of the

importance of uncertainty in model predictions

Can we trust them?

Without any quantification of output uncertainty,

it’s easy to dismiss them

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 3

Examples

Climate

prediction

Molecular

dynamics

Nuclear waste

disposal

Oil fields

Engineering

design

Hydrology

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 4

Sources of uncertainty

A computer model takes inputs x and

produces outputs y = f(x)

How might y differ from the true real-world

value z that the model is supposed to predict?

Error in inputs x

Initial values, forcing inputs, model parameters

Error in model structure or solution

Wrong, inaccurate or incomplete science

Bugs, solution errors

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 5

Quantifying uncertainty

The ideal is to provide a probability distribution

p(z) for the true real-world value

The centre of the distribution is a best estimate

is induced by uncertainties

on the last slide

How do we get this?

Input uncertainty: characterise p(x), propagate

through to p(y)

Structural uncertainty: characterise p(z-y)

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 6

Example: UK carbon flux in 2000

Vegetation model predicts carbon exchange

from each of 700 pixels over England & Wales

Principal output is Net Biosphere Production

Accounting for uncertainty in inputs

Soil properties

Properties of different types of vegetation

Aggregated to England & Wales total

Allowing for correlations

Estimate 7.61 Mt C

Std deviation 0.61 Mt C

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 7

Maps

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 8

Sensitivity analysis

Map shows proportion of

overall uncertainty in

each pixel that is due to

uncertainty in the

vegetation parameters

As opposed to soil

parameters

Contribution of

vegetation uncertainty

is largest in

grasslands/moorlands

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 9

England & Wales aggregate

PFT

Plug-in estimate

(Mt C)

Mean

(Mt C)

Variance

(Mt C 2 )

Grass 5.28 4.65 0.323

Crop 0.85 0.50 0.038

Deciduous 2.13 1.69 0.009

Evergreen 0.80 0.78 0.001

Covariances 0.001

Total 9.06 7.61 0.372

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 10

Reducing uncertainty

Informal – more/better science

Tighten p(x) through improved understanding

Tighten p(z-y) through improved modelling or

programming

Formal – using real-world data

Calibration – learn about model parameters

Data assimilation – learn about the state

variables

Validation

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 11

Example: Nuclear accident

Radiation was released after an accident at

the Tomsk-7 chemical plant in 1993

Data comprise measurements of the

deposition of ruthenium 106 at 695 locations

obtained by aerial survey after the release

The computer code is a simple Gaussian

plume model for atmospheric dispersion

Two calibration parameters

Total release of 106 Ru (source term)

Deposition velocity

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 12

Data

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 13

Calibration

A small sample (N=10 to 25) of the 695 data points

was used to calibrate the model

Then the remaining observations were predicted and

RMS prediction error computed

Sample size N 10 15 20 25

Best fit calibration 0.82 0.79 0.76 0.66

Bayesian calibration 0.49 0.41 0.37 0.38

On a log scale, error of 0.7 corresponds to a factor of 2

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 14

So far, so good, but

In principle, all this is straightforward

In practice, there are many technical difficulties

Formulating uncertainty on inputs

Elicitation of expert judgements

Propagating input uncertainty

Modelling structural error

Anything involving observational data!

The last two are intricately linked

And computation

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 15

The problem of big models

Tasks like uncertainty propagation and calibration

require us to run the model many times

Uncertainty propagation

Implicitly, we need to run f(x) at all possible x

Monte Carlo works by taking a sample of x from p(x)

Typically needs thousands of model runs

Calibration

Traditionally this is done by searching the x space for

good fits to the data

This is impractical if the model takes more than a few

seconds to run

We need a more efficient technique

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 16

Gaussian process representation

More efficient approach

First work in early 1980s (DACE)

Consider the code as an unknown function

f(.) becomes a random process

We represent it as a Gaussian process (GP)

Training runs

Run model for sample of x values

Condition GP on observed data

Typically requires many fewer runs than MC

And x values don’t need to be chosen randomly

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 17

Emulation

Analysis is completed by prior distributions for,

and posterior estimation of, hyperparameters

The posterior distribution is known as an

emulator of the computer code

Posterior mean estimates what the code would

produce for any untried x (prediction)

With uncertainty about that prediction given by

posterior variance

Correctly reproduces training data

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 18

2 code runs

Consider one input and one output

Emulator estimate interpolates data

Emulator uncertainty grows between data points

dat2

10

5

0

0

1

2

3

x

4

5

6

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 19

3 code runs

Adding another point changes estimate and

reduces uncertainty

dat3

10

5

0

0

1

2

3

x

4

5

6

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 20

5 code runs

And so on

dat5

9

8

7

6

5

4

3

2

1

0

0

1

2

3

x

4

5

6

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 21

Then what?

Given enough training data points we can

emulate any model accurately

So that posterior variance is small “everywhere”

Typically, this can be done with orders of

magnitude fewer model runs than traditional

methods

Use the emulator to make inference about

other things of interest

E.g. uncertainty analysis, calibration

Conceptually very straightforward in the

Bayesian framework

But of course can be computationally hard

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 22

DACE and BACCO

This has led to a wide ranging body of tools for

inference about all kinds of uncertainties in

computer models

All based on building the GP emulator of the

model from a set of training runs

Early work concentrated on prediction – DACE

Design and Analysis of Computer Experiments

More recently, wider scope and emphasis on

the Bayesian framework – BACCO

Bayesian Analysis of Computer Code Output

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 23

BACCO includes

Uncertainty analysis

Sensitivity analysis

Calibration

Data assimilation

Model validation

Optimisation

Etc…

All within a single coherent framework

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 24

Research directions

Models with heterogeneous local behaviour

Regions of input space with rapid response, jumps

High dimensional models

Many inputs, outputs, data points

Dynamic models

Data assimilation

Stochastic models

Relationship between models and reality

Model/emulator validation

Multiple models

Design of experiments

Sequential design

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 25

Dynamic models

X 0

c 1

f 1

c 2

X 1

Initial state x 0 is updated recursively by the

one-step model f 1(x,c)

Forcing inputs c t

f 1

c 3

X 2

f 1

Interested in sequence x 1, x 2, … x T

At least 4 approaches to emulating this

c T-1

X T-2

f 1

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 26

c T

X T-1

f 1

X T

1. Treat time as input

X 0

c 1

f 1

c 2

X 1

Emulate x t as the function

Easy to do

f 1

c 3

X 2

f 1

f(x 0,t) = f t(x 0,c t ) = f 1(x t-1,c t)

= f 1(… f 1(f 1(x 0,c 1),c 2)…,c t)

Hard to get the temporal correlation structure

right

c T-1

X T-2

f 1

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 27

c T

X T-1

f 1

X T

2. Multivariate emulation

X 0

c 1

f 1

c 2

X 1

f 1

c 3

X 2

f 1

Emulate the vector x = (x 1, x 2, … x T) as the

multi-output function

f T(x 0) = (f 1(x 0,c 1 ), f 2(x 0,c 2 ), …, f T(x 0,c T ))

Simple extension of univariate theory

Restrictive covariance structure

c T-1

X T-2

f 1

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 28

c T

X T-1

f 1

X T

3. Functional output emulation

X 0

c 1

f 1

c 2

X 1

f 1

c 3

X 2

f 1

Treat x series as a functional output

Identify features (e.g. principal components) to

summarise function

Same theory as for multivariate emulation, but

lower dimension

Loss of information, no longer reproduces

training data

c T-1

X T-2

f 1

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 29

c T

X T-1

f 1

X T

4. Recursive emulation

X 0

c 1

f 1

c 2

X 1

f 1

c 3

X 2

f 1

Emulate the single step function

f 1(x,c)

Iterate the emulator numerically

May take longer than original model!

Or approximate filtering algorithm

May be inaccurate for large T

c T-1

X T-2

f 1

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 30

c T

X T-1

f 1

X T

Some comparisons

Multivariate emulation (approach 2) is better

than treating time as an input (approach 1)

Validates better

Able to work with partial series

Recursive emulation (approach 4) under

development

Only recursive emulation can

realistically treat uncertainty in forcing inputs

extend T beyond training data

tackle data assimilation

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 31

MUCM

Managing Uncertainty in Complex Models

Large 4-year research grant

7 postdoctoral research assistants

4 PhD studentships

Started in June 2006

Based in Sheffield and 4 other UK universities

Objective:

To develop BACCO methods into a robust

technology …

toolkit

that is widely applicable across the spectrum of

modelling applications

case studies

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 32

MUCM2

“Translation” grant

Two years

September 2010 to September 2012

Scope further challenges

Develop funding proposals

Develop services to the user community

Take MUCM forward to the next level

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk

Slide 33

Thank you

http://mucm.group.shef.ac.uk Slide 34

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