Risk-taking and recovery in task-oriented dialogue

Jean Carletta, Christopher S. Mellish

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The Principle of Parsimony states that people usually try to complete tasks with the least effort that will produce a satisfactory solution. In task-oriented dialogue, this produces a tension between conveying information carefully to the partner and leaving it to be inferred, risking a misunderstanding and the need for recovery. Using natural dialogue examples, primarily from the HCRC Map Task, we apply the Principle of Parsimony to a range of information types and identify a set of applicable recovery strategies. We argue that risk-taking and recovery are crucial for efficient dialogue because they pinpoint which information must be transferred and allow control of the interaction to switch to the participant who can best guide the course of the dialogue.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-107
JournalJournal of Pragmatics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 1996


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