Building-damage mapping using remote sensing images plays a critical role in providing quick and accurate information for the first responders after major earthquakes. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in generating post-earthquake building-damage maps automatically using different artificial intelligence (AI)-based frameworks. These frameworks in this domain are promising, yet not reliable for several reasons, including but not limited to the site-specific design of the methods, the lack of transparency in the AI-model, the lack of quality in the labelled image, and the use of irrelevant descriptor features in building the AI-model. Using explainable AI (XAI) can lead us to gain insight into identifying these limitations and therefore, to modify the training dataset and the model accordingly. This paper proposes the use of SHAP (Shapley additive explanation) to interpret the outputs of a multilayer perceptron (MLP)-a machine learning model-and analyse the impact of each feature descriptor included in the model for building-damage assessment to examine the reliability of the model. In this study, a post-event satellite image from the 2018 Palu earthquake was used. The results show that MLP can classify the collapsed and non-collapsed buildings with an overall accuracy of 84% after removing the redundant features. Further, spectral features are found to be more important than texture features in distinguishing the collapsed and non-collapsed buildings. Finally, we argue that constructing an explainable model would help to understand the model's decision to classify the buildings as collapsed and non-collapsed and open avenues to build a transferable AI model.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.