Training Neural Response Selection for Task-Oriented Dialogue Systems

Matthew Henderson, Ivan Vulić, Daniela Gerz, Iñigo Casanueva, Paweł Budzianowski, Sam Coope, Georgios Spithourakis, Tsung-Hsien Wen, Nikola Mrkšić, Pei-Hao Su


Abstract
Despite their popularity in the chatbot literature, retrieval-based models have had modest impact on task-oriented dialogue systems, with the main obstacle to their application being the low-data regime of most task-oriented dialogue tasks. Inspired by the recent success of pretraining in language modelling, we propose an effective method for deploying response selection in task-oriented dialogue. To train response selection models for task-oriented dialogue tasks, we propose a novel method which: 1) pretrains the response selection model on large general-domain conversational corpora; and then 2) fine-tunes the pretrained model for the target dialogue domain, relying only on the small in-domain dataset to capture the nuances of the given dialogue domain. Our evaluation on five diverse application domains, ranging from e-commerce to banking, demonstrates the effectiveness of the proposed training method.
Anthology ID:
P19-1536
Volume:
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics
Month:
July
Year:
2019
Address:
Florence, Italy
Venue:
ACL
SIG:
Publisher:
Association for Computational Linguistics
Note:
Pages:
5392–5404
Language:
URL:
https://www.aclweb.org/anthology/P19-1536
DOI:
10.18653/v1/P19-1536
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PDF:
http://aclanthology.lst.uni-saarland.de/P19-1536.pdf