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A Network of Excellence forging the
Multilingual Europe Technology Alliance

Collaboration Agreement between DIRHA and META-NET


The Network of Excellence “Technologies for the Multilingual European Information Society”, henceforth META-NET, and the European STREP project “Distant-speech Interaction for Robust Home Applications”, henceforth DIRHA, both established within Framework Programme 7, recognise the complementarity of their objectives and declare their intent for multi-level collaboration.

Scope and Objectives of the Participants

The DIRHA project addresses the challenge of natural spontaneous speech interaction with distant microphones in a home environment. The main fields on which research will be conducted, and for which suitable solutions will be identified and embedded in real-time prototypes, are: multichannel acoustic processing, distant speech recognition and understanding, speaker identification/verification, and spoken dialogue management. The project also aims to investigate the use of a new type of acquisition device consisting of MEMS (Micro Electrical-Mechanical System) digital microphone arrays. The project addresses four languages: Italian, Greek, Portuguese and German. For comparison purposes, the English language will also be used. With this regard, a goal of the project is the development of acoustic/speech/text corpora and tools which might be released at international level for research and benckmarking purposes.

META-NET is a Network of Excellence dedicated to the technological foundations of the European multilingual information society. Its main goals are: to build a strategic alliance, consisting of national and international research programmes, corporate users and commercial technology providers and language communities; to strengthen the European research community through research networking and by creating new schemes and structures for sharing resources, that is the META-SHARE infrastructure; and to build bridges by approaching open problems in collaboration with other research fields such as machine learning, social computing, cognitive systems, knowledge technologies and multimedia content. META-NET will lead to a strong language technology community with ties to other R&D communities, with a network into industry and public administration, and with visions and plans for a strategic research agenda, to support the sustainability of the European, multilingual information society.

Areas of collaboration

Potential synergies between DIRHA and META-NET regard data distribution. In fact, DIRHA aims to create different kinds of corpora which comprise: simulated data, real speech data recorded by a microphone network, and text data. Some portions of these corpora will be annotated (either manually or automatically) according to existing international standards, and will be made available publicly.

DIRHA will provide access to some of its tools and data resources via the META-SHARE infrastructure, in addition to other DIRHA project specific dissemination channels.

Moreover, DIRHA will actively participate and exhibit at META-NET events (e.g. META-FORUM), and will promote META-NET through its various dissemination channels and materials.



Signed on behalf of DIRHA

Signed on behalf of META-NET

Paolo Traverso

Coordinator of DIRHA


Hans Uszkoreit

Coordinator of META-NET


Paolo Traverso