2008Q3 Reports: SIGDIAL

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Tim Paek, SIGdial President David Traum, SIGdial President Emeritus

SIGdial is the ACL and ISCA Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue, this year celebrating its 10th anniversary, having been formed in November 1997. More information about SIGdial can be found on the webpages: http://www.sigdial.org including an actively updated calendar of upcoming events, resources, and previous reports. Members can join from the webpage, which includes participation in a low-volume, moderated mailing list (mainly conference and job announcements). SIGdial currently has 472 members from 36 countries (up 25 members and two countries from last year). Sigdial is fully compliant with ACL and ISCA guidelines for SIGs.

An election of officers and three advisory board members was held in Spring of 2008 for a 2 year term. SIGdial is currently led by officers Tim Paek (President), Amanda Stent (Vice President), and Kristiina Jokinen (Secretary), and Science Advisory Committee members Jan Alexandersson, Michael McTear, Alexander Rudnicky, David Schlangen, Candace Sidner, and Ronnie Smith. Additional positions are President Emeritus: David Traum, Information officer: Karen Ward, SIG SLUD/JSAI liaison: Yasuhiro Katagiri , ISCA Liaison: TBA, Mailing List Maintainer: Laurent Romary, and Student Liaison: TBA.

SIGdial has held an annual workshop on discourse and dialogue since 2000. The last workshop was held in September 2007, in Antwerp, Netherlands, just before the Interspeech 2007 conference. The program chairs were Harry Bunt and Tim Paek, and Simon Keizer was local arrangements chair. The next workshop will be in Columbus Ohio, May 2008, co-located with ACL. The program chairs are Beth Ann Hockey and David Schlangen. More information on SIGdial workshops can be found here: http://www.sigdial.org/workshops/ In 2009, the 10th annual meeting will become a conference, to be held nearby the Interspeech 2009 conference in Brighton, England.

SIGdial also endorses a number of other dialogue-related workshops and events that are open to the general community. The SIGdial Endorsed events for the previous and upcoming year are:

September, 2007: Young Researchers' Roundtable on Spoken Dialog Systems (Antwerp, Netherlands)

May 2008,Young Researchers' Roundtable on Spoken Dialog Systems, Columbus, Ohio

July 2008: ECAI 2008 workshop on Integrating Embodied Conversational Agents with Speech and Advanced Dialogue Modeling (Patras, Greece)

July 2008: 3rd workshop on Constraints in Discourse (Potsdam, Germany)

August 2008: Coling 2008 Workshop on Spoken Language Technologies for Pervasive Speech-based and Multimodal Applications (Manchester, UK)

September 2009: Bridging the Gap: Academic and Industrial Research in Dialog Technologies (Brisnabe, Australia

Several new initiatives are under discussion in the SIGdial board, including:

  • a revamped website with more resources and ability for community participation
  • launching of a new open access journal specializing in dialogue and discourse
  • outreach to various related research communities