Meta-Reinforced Multi-Domain State Generator for Dialogue Systems

A Dialogue State Tracker (DST) is a core component of a modular task-oriented dialogue system. Tremendous progress has been made in recent years. However, the major challenges remain. The state-of-the-art accuracy for DST is below 50{\%} for a multi-domain dialogue task. A learnable DST for any new domain requires a large amount of labeled in-domain data and training from scratch. In this paper, we propose a Meta-Reinforced Multi-Domain State Generator (MERET). Our first contribution is to improve the DST accuracy. We enhance a neural model based DST generator with a reward manager, which is built on policy gradient reinforcement learning (RL) to fine-tune the generator. With this change, we are able to improve the joint accuracy of DST from 48.79{\%} to 50.91{\%} on the MultiWOZ corpus. Second, we explore to train a DST meta-learning model with a few domains as source domains and a new domain as target domain. We apply the model-agnostic meta-learning algorithm (MAML) to DST and the obtained meta-learning model is used for new domain adaptation. Our experimental results show this solution is able to outperform the traditional training approach with extremely less training data in target domain.

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