10th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Brighton, United Kingdom
September 6-10, 2009

Pronunciation-Based ASR for Names

Henk van den Heuvel (1), Bert Réveil (2), Jean-Pierre Martens (2)

(1) Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, The Netherlands
(2) Ghent University, Belgium

To improve the ASR of proper names a novel method based on the generation of pronunciation variants by means of phonemeto- phoneme converters (P2Ps) is proposed. The aim is convert baseline transcriptions into variants that maximally resemble actual name pronunciations that were found in a training corpus. The method has to operate in a cross lingual setting with native Dutch persons speaking Dutch and foreign names, and foreign persons speaking Dutch names. The P2Ps are trained to act either on conventional G2P-transcriptions or on canonical transcriptions that were provided by a human expert. Including the variants produced by the P2Ps in the lexicon of the recognizer substantially improves the recognition accuracy for natives pronouncing foreign names, but not for the other investigated combinations.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Heuvel, Henk van den / Réveil, Bert / Martens, Jean-Pierre (2009): "Pronunciation-based ASR for names", In INTERSPEECH-2009, 2991-2994.