A01 Dialogue engagement and rapport research group

Communicative intelligent systems to maintain dialogue engagement and rapport

Principal Investigator
Tatsuya KAWAHARA (Kyoto University, Professor)
Special field : Speech information processing
Role : Management of the group's research, Attentive listening system
Yuichiro YOSHIKAWA (Osaka University, Associate Professor)
Special field : Social robotics
Role : Multiple conversational robots system
Takamasa IIO (University of Tsukuba, Assistant Professor)
Special field : Social robotics
Role : Multimodal dialogue system
Koji INOUE (Kyoto University, Assistant Professor)
Special field : Spoken dialogue
Role : Multimodal response system

When human beings interact with each other on a daily basis, the purpose of the interaction is often to maintain the communication itself or the rapport, rather than conducting any specific tasks. Realization of this rapport maintenance via dialogue engagement is also required for communicative robots. The Dialogue Engagement and Rapport Research Group aims to elucidate and realize the mechanism for maintaining dialogue, especially targeting communication with elderly people. In dialogue with elderly people, the performance of automatic speech recognition is degraded, and understanding intent may be difficult. Even so, it is still possible to maintain dialogue by utilizing multi-modal information such as backchanneling, nodding, and facial expressions, and also by making conversation with multiple humans / robots. This research group will tackle the following issues from the above perspectives.

  1. Dialogue engagement by multi-modal responses and multiple robots turn-taking
  2. Rapport maintenance via dialogue engagement in multi-party conversations
  3. Communicative intelligent robot services based on dialogue engagement and rapport

As a result, we will reveal what kind of dialogue protocols are effective for dialogue engagement even if the content of the dialogue cannot be understood, and enable the rapport establishment through dialogue engagement even if understanding of the intent is not complete. This group will also demonstrate what kind of dialogue service can be realized by the communicative intelligent robots based on the robust dialogue protocols.