8th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology

Geneva, Switzerland
September 1-4, 2003


Evaluating Discourse Understanding in Spoken Dialogue Systems

Ryuichiro Higashinaka, Noboru Miyazaki, Mikio Nakano, Kiyoaki Aikawa

NTT Corporation, Japan

This paper describes a method for creating an evaluation measure for discourse understanding in spoken dialogue systems. Discourse understanding means utterance understanding taking the context into account. Since the measure needs to be determined based on its correlation with the system's performance, conventional measures, such as the concept error rate, cannot be easily applied. Using the multiple linear regression analysis, we have previously shown that the weighted sum of various metrics concerning dialogue states can be used for the evaluation of discourse understanding in a single domain. This paper reports the progress of our work: verification of our approach by additional experiments in another domain. The support vector regression method performs better than the multiple linear regression method in creating the measure, indicating non-linearity in mapping the metrics to the system's performance. The results give strong support for our approach and hint at its suitability as a universal evaluation measure for discourse understanding.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Higashinaka, Ryuichiro / Miyazaki, Noboru / Nakano, Mikio / Aikawa, Kiyoaki (2003): "Evaluating discourse understanding in spoken dialogue systems", In EUROSPEECH-2003, 1941-1944.