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"Recommendation": models, code, and papers

Combining Privileged Information to Improve Context-Aware Recommender Systems

Nov 07, 2015
Camila V. Sundermann, Marcos A. Domingues, Ricardo M. Marcacini, Solange O. Rezende

A recommender system is an information filtering technology which can be used to predict preference ratings of items (products, services, movies, etc) and/or to output a ranking of items that are likely to be of interest to the user. Context-aware recommender systems (CARS) learn and predict the tastes and preferences of users by incorporating available contextual information in the recommendation process. One of the major challenges in context-aware recommender systems research is the lack of automatic methods to obtain contextual information for these systems. Considering this scenario, in this paper, we propose to use contextual information from topic hierarchies of the items (web pages) to improve the performance of context-aware recommender systems. The topic hierarchies are constructed by an extension of the LUPI-based Incremental Hierarchical Clustering method that considers three types of information: traditional bag-of-words (technical information), and the combination of named entities (privileged information I) with domain terms (privileged information II). We evaluated the contextual information in four context-aware recommender systems. Different weights were assigned to each type of information. The empirical results demonstrated that topic hierarchies with the combination of the two kinds of privileged information can provide better recommendations.


Recommending Multiple Positive Citations for Manuscript via Content-Dependent Modeling and Multi-Positive Triplet

Nov 25, 2021
Yang Zhang, Qiang Ma

Considering the rapidly increasing number of academic papers, searching for and citing appropriate references has become a non-trial task during the wiring of papers. Recommending a handful of candidate papers to a manuscript before publication could ease the burden of the authors, and help the reviewers to check the completeness of the cited resources. Conventional approaches on citation recommendation generally consider recommending one ground-truth citation for a query context from an input manuscript, but lack of consideration on co-citation recommendations. However, a piece of context often needs to be supported by two or more co-citation pairs. Here, we propose a novel scientific paper modeling for citation recommendations, namely Multi-Positive BERT Model for Citation Recommendation (MP-BERT4CR), complied with a series of Multi-Positive Triplet objectives to recommend multiple positive citations for a query context. The proposed approach has the following advantages: First, the proposed multi-positive objectives are effective to recommend multiple positive candidates. Second, we adopt noise distributions which are built based on the historical co-citation frequencies, so that MP-BERT4CR is not only effective on recommending high-frequent co-citation pairs; but also the performances on retrieving the low-frequent ones are significantly improved. Third, we propose a dynamic context sampling strategy which captures the ``macro-scoped'' citing intents from a manuscript and empowers the citation embeddings to be content-dependent, which allow the algorithm to further improve the performances. Single and multiple positive recommendation experiments testified that MP-BERT4CR delivered significant improvements. In addition, MP-BERT4CR are also effective in retrieving the full list of co-citations, and historically low-frequent co-citation pairs compared with the prior works.

* The 20th IEEE/WIC/ACM International Conference on Web Intelligence and Intelligent Agent Technology 2021 

Content-based Music Recommendation: Evolution, State of the Art, and Challenges

Jul 25, 2021
Yashar Deldjoo, Markus Schedl, Peter Knees

The music domain is among the most important ones for adopting recommender systems technology. In contrast to most other recommendation domains, which predominantly rely on collaborative filtering (CF) techniques, music recommenders have traditionally embraced content-based (CB) approaches. In the past years, music recommendation models that leverage collaborative and content data -- which we refer to as content-driven models -- have been replacing pure CF or CB models. In this survey, we review 47 articles on content-driven music recommendation. Based on a thorough literature analysis, we first propose an onion model comprising five layers, each of which corresponds to a category of music content we identified: signal, embedded metadata, expert-generated content, user-generated content, and derivative content. We provide a detailed characterization of each category along several dimensions. Second, we identify six overarching challenges, according to which we organize our main discussion: increasing recommendation diversity and novelty, providing transparency and explanations, accomplishing context-awareness, recommending sequences of music, improving scalability and efficiency, and alleviating cold start. Each article addressing one or more of these challenges is categorized according to the content layers of our onion model, the article's goal(s), and main methodological choices. Furthermore, articles are discussed in temporal order to shed light on the evolution of content-driven music recommendation strategies. Finally, we provide our personal selection of the persisting grand challenges, which are still waiting to be solved in future research endeavors.

* 35 pages, 2 figures 

The Unfairness of Popularity Bias in Music Recommendation: A Reproducibility Study

Dec 19, 2019
Dominik Kowald, Markus Schedl, Elisabeth Lex

Research has shown that recommender systems are typically biased towards popular items, which leads to less popular items being underrepresented in recommendations. The recent work of Abdollahpouri et al. in the context of movie recommendations has shown that this popularity bias leads to unfair treatment of both long-tail items as well as users with little interest in popular items. In this paper, we reproduce the analyses of Abdollahpouri et al. in the context of music recommendation. Specifically, we investigate three user groups from the LastFM music platform that are categorized based on how much their listening preferences deviate from the most popular music among all LastFM users in the dataset: (i) low-mainstream users, (ii) medium-mainstream users, and (iii) high-mainstream users. In line with Abdollahpouri et al., we find that state-of-the-art recommendation algorithms favor popular items also in the music domain. However, their proposed Group Average Popularity metric yields different results for LastFM than for the movie domain, presumably due to the larger number of available items (i.e., music artists) in the LastFM dataset we use. Finally, we compare the accuracy results of the recommendation algorithms for the three user groups and find that the low-mainstreaminess group significantly receives the worst recommendations.

* ECIR 2020 reproducibility track 

Adversarial Personalized Ranking for Recommendation

Aug 12, 2018
Xiangnan He, Zhankui He, Xiaoyu Du, Tat-Seng Chua

Item recommendation is a personalized ranking task. To this end, many recommender systems optimize models with pairwise ranking objectives, such as the Bayesian Personalized Ranking (BPR). Using matrix Factorization (MF) --- the most widely used model in recommendation --- as a demonstration, we show that optimizing it with BPR leads to a recommender model that is not robust. In particular, we find that the resultant model is highly vulnerable to adversarial perturbations on its model parameters, which implies the possibly large error in generalization. To enhance the robustness of a recommender model and thus improve its generalization performance, we propose a new optimization framework, namely Adversarial Personalized Ranking (APR). In short, our APR enhances the pairwise ranking method BPR by performing adversarial training. It can be interpreted as playing a minimax game, where the minimization of the BPR objective function meanwhile defends an adversary, which adds adversarial perturbations on model parameters to maximize the BPR objective function. To illustrate how it works, we implement APR on MF by adding adversarial perturbations on the embedding vectors of users and items. Extensive experiments on three public real-world datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of APR --- by optimizing MF with APR, it outperforms BPR with a relative improvement of 11.2% on average and achieves state-of-the-art performance for item recommendation. Our implementation is available at:

* SIGIR 2018 

A multimedia recommendation model based on collaborative graph

May 30, 2022
Breda Lim, Shubhi Bansal, Ahmed Buru, Kayla Manthey

As one of the main solutions to the information overload problem, recommender systems are widely used in daily life. In the recent emerging micro-video recommendation scenario, micro-videos contain rich multimedia information, involving text, image, video and other multimodal data, and these rich multimodal information conceals users' deep interest in the items. Most of the current recommendation algorithms based on multimodal data use multimodal information to expand the information on the item side, but ignore the different preferences of users for different modal information, and lack the fine-grained mining of the internal connection of multimodal information. To investigate the problems in the micro-video recommendr system mentioned above, we design a hybrid recommendation model based on multimodal information, introduces multimodal information and user-side auxiliary information in the network structure, fully explores the deep interest of users, measures the importance of each dimension of user and item feature representation in the scoring prediction task, makes the application of graph neural network in the recommendation system is improved by using an attention mechanism to fuse the multi-layer state output information, allowing the shallow structural features provided by the intermediate layer to better participate in the prediction task. The recommendation accuracy is improved compared with the traditional recommendation algorithm on different data sets, and the feasibility and effectiveness of our model is verified.


Unbiased Cascade Bandits: Mitigating Exposure Bias in Online Learning to Rank Recommendation

Aug 07, 2021
Masoud Mansoury, Himan Abdollahpouri, Bamshad Mobasher, Mykola Pechenizkiy, Robin Burke, Milad Sabouri

Exposure bias is a well-known issue in recommender systems where items and suppliers are not equally represented in the recommendation results. This is especially problematic when bias is amplified over time as a few popular items are repeatedly over-represented in recommendation lists. This phenomenon can be viewed as a recommendation feedback loop: the system repeatedly recommends certain items at different time points and interactions of users with those items will amplify bias towards those items over time. This issue has been extensively studied in the literature on model-based or neighborhood-based recommendation algorithms, but less work has been done on online recommendation models such as those based on multi-armed Bandit algorithms. In this paper, we study exposure bias in a class of well-known bandit algorithms known as Linear Cascade Bandits. We analyze these algorithms on their ability to handle exposure bias and provide a fair representation for items and suppliers in the recommendation results. Our analysis reveals that these algorithms fail to treat items and suppliers fairly and do not sufficiently explore the item space for each user. To mitigate this bias, we propose a discounting factor and incorporate it into these algorithms that controls the exposure of items at each time step. To show the effectiveness of the proposed discounting factor on mitigating exposure bias, we perform experiments on two datasets using three cascading bandit algorithms and our experimental results show that the proposed method improves the exposure fairness for items and suppliers.


Empirical Analysis of Session-Based Recommendation Algorithms

Oct 28, 2019
Malte Ludewig, Noemi Mauro, Sara Latifi, Dietmar Jannach

Recommender systems are tools that support online users by pointing them to potential items of interest in situations of information overload. In recent years, the class of session-based recommendation algorithms received more attention in the research literature. These algorithms base their recommendations solely on the observed interactions with the user in an ongoing session and do not require the existence of long-term preference profiles. Most recently, a number of deep learning based ("neural") approaches to session-based recommendations were proposed. However, previous research indicates that today's complex neural recommendation methods are not always better than comparably simple algorithms in terms of prediction accuracy. With this work, our goal is to shed light on the state-of-the-art in the area of session-based recommendation and on the progress that is made with neural approaches. For this purpose, we compare twelve algorithmic approaches, among them six recent neural methods, under identical conditions on various datasets. We find that the progress in terms of prediction accuracy that is achieved with neural methods is still limited. In most cases, our experiments show that simple heuristic methods based on nearest-neighbors schemes are preferable over conceptually and computationally more complex methods. Observations from a user study furthermore indicate that recommendations based on heuristic methods were also well accepted by the study participants. To support future progress and reproducibility in this area, we publicly share the session-rec evaluation framework that was used in our research.


Experiments on Generalizability of User-Oriented Fairness in Recommender Systems

May 17, 2022
Hossein A. Rahmani, Mohammadmehdi Naghiaei, Mahdi Dehghan, Mohammad Aliannejadi

Recent work in recommender systems mainly focuses on fairness in recommendations as an important aspect of measuring recommendations quality. A fairness-aware recommender system aims to treat different user groups similarly. Relevant work on user-oriented fairness highlights the discriminative behavior of fairness-unaware recommendation algorithms towards a certain user group, defined based on users' activity level. Typical solutions include proposing a user-centered fairness re-ranking framework applied on top of a base ranking model to mitigate its unfair behavior towards a certain user group i.e., disadvantaged group. In this paper, we re-produce a user-oriented fairness study and provide extensive experiments to analyze the dependency of their proposed method on various fairness and recommendation aspects, including the recommendation domain, nature of the base ranking model, and user grouping method. Moreover, we evaluate the final recommendations provided by the re-ranking framework from both user- (e.g., NDCG, user-fairness) and item-side (e.g., novelty, item-fairness) metrics. We discover interesting trends and trade-offs between the model's performance in terms of different evaluation metrics. For instance, we see that the definition of the advantaged/disadvantaged user groups plays a crucial role in the effectiveness of the fairness algorithm and how it improves the performance of specific base ranking models. Finally, we highlight some important open challenges and future directions in this field. We release the data, evaluation pipeline, and the trained models publicly on

* SIGIR 2022 

Personalised Visual Art Recommendation by Learning Latent Semantic Representations

Jul 24, 2020
Bereket Abera Yilma, Najib Aghenda, Marcelo Romero, Yannick Naudet, Herve Panetto

In Recommender systems, data representation techniques play a great role as they have the power to entangle, hide and reveal explanatory factors embedded within datasets. Hence, they influence the quality of recommendations. Specifically, in Visual Art (VA) recommendations the complexity of the concepts embodied within paintings, makes the task of capturing semantics by machines far from trivial. In VA recommendation, prominent works commonly use manually curated metadata to drive recommendations. Recent works in this domain aim at leveraging visual features extracted using Deep Neural Networks (DNN). However, such data representation approaches are resource demanding and do not have a direct interpretation, hindering user acceptance. To address these limitations, we introduce an approach for Personalised Recommendation of Visual arts based on learning latent semantic representation of paintings. Specifically, we trained a Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) model on textual descriptions of paintings. Our LDA model manages to successfully uncover non-obvious semantic relationships between paintings whilst being able to offer explainable recommendations. Experimental evaluations demonstrate that our method tends to perform better than exploiting visual features extracted using pre-trained Deep Neural Networks.

* Accepted at SMAP2020