Planning Text for Advisory Dialogues: Capturing Intentional and Rhetorical Information

Johanna D. Moore, Cécile Paris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To participate in a dialogue a system must be capable of reasoning about its own previous utterances. Follow-up questions must be interpreted in the context of the ongoing conversation, and the system’s previous contributions form part of this context. Furthermore, if a system is to be able to clarify misunderstood explanations or to elaborate on prior explanations, it must understand what is has conveyed in prior explanations. Previous approaches to generating multisentential texts have relied solely on rhetorical structuring techniques. In this paper, we argue that, to handle explanation dialogues successfully, a discourse model must include information about the intended effect of individual parts of the text on the hearer, as well as how the parts relate to one another rhetorically. We present a text planner that records this information, and show how the resulting structure is used to respond appropriately to a follow-up question.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)651-694
Number of pages44
JournalComputational Linguistics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1993


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