BERT-Based Neural Collaborative Filtering and Fixed-Length Contiguous Tokens Explanation

We propose a novel, accurate, and explainable recommender model (BENEFICT) that addresses two drawbacks that most review-based recommender systems face. First is their utilization of traditional word embeddings that could influence prediction performance due to their inability to model the word semantics{'} dynamic characteristic. Second is their black-box nature that makes the explanations behind every prediction obscure. Our model uniquely integrates three key elements: BERT, multilayer perceptron, and maximum subarray problem to derive contextualized review features, model user-item interactions, and generate explanations, respectively. Our experiments show that BENEFICT consistently outperforms other state-of-the-art models by an average improvement gain of nearly 7{\%}. Based on the human judges{'} assessment, the BENEFICT-produced explanations can capture the essence of the customer{'}s preference and help future customers make purchasing decisions. To the best of our knowledge, our model is one of the first recommender models to utilize BERT for neural collaborative filtering.

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