Local Contextual Attention with Hierarchical Structure for Dialogue Act Recognition

12 Mar 2020  ·  Zhigang Dai, Jinhua Fu, Qile Zhu, Hengbin Cui, Xiaolong Li, Yuan Qi ·

Dialogue act recognition is a fundamental task for an intelligent dialogue system. Previous work models the whole dialog to predict dialog acts, which may bring the noise from unrelated sentences. In this work, we design a hierarchical model based on self-attention to capture intra-sentence and inter-sentence information. We revise the attention distribution to focus on the local and contextual semantic information by incorporating the relative position information between utterances. Based on the found that the length of dialog affects the performance, we introduce a new dialog segmentation mechanism to analyze the effect of dialog length and context padding length under online and offline settings. The experiment shows that our method achieves promising performance on two datasets: Switchboard Dialogue Act and DailyDialog with the accuracy of 80.34\% and 85.81\% respectively. Visualization of the attention weights shows that our method can learn the context dependency between utterances explicitly.

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