Justine Cassell (Ph.D., University of Chicago) is Associate Dean of the School of Computer Science for Technology Strategy and Impact at Carnegie Mellon University, Co-Founder of the Simon Initiative for Technology-Enhanced Learning, and until recently, Director of the Human-Computer Interaction Institute in the School of Computer Science. Cassell comes to CMU from Northwestern, where she was the founding director of the Center for Technology and Social Behavior joint PhD in Communication and Computer Science, and of the Center for Technology and Social Behavior. Before Northwestern, Cassell was a tenured faculty member at the MIT Media Lab, where she headed the Gesture and Narrative Language research group. Cassell’s research focuses on understanding natural forms of communication, and then creating technological tools for those forms of communication and linguistic expression to flourish in the digital world. In particular, she is credited with developing the Embodied Conversational Agent, a virtual human capable of interacting with humans using both language and nonverbal behavior. More recently Cassell has investigated the role that the virtual peer (a child-sized version of the Embodied Conversational Agent) can play in children’s lives, and has demonstrated that the virtual peer can play an important role in scaffolding learning, particularly for those children in under-resourced schools.
More information is available on Justine’s website.
Emer is a Post-Doc in our working on the KETI project with Professor Justine Cassell at Inria, Paris. She is developing a novel theory of interpersonality – how personality traits of different interlocutors affect conversational progress. Emer’s Ph.D., pursued at Trinity College Dublin under the supervision of Profs Nick Campbell and Carl Vogel, focussed on multiparty casual conversation, particularly in terms of timing of speech, silence, and overlap in chat and chunk phases. Prior to her return to academia as a mature student, Emer worked in the design, coordination, and provision of language and integration training to refugees in Ireland, as part of IILT, a campus company of Trinity College Dublin. She carries on this work through her side project, ListenHere (https://listenhere.ie), a non-profit providing free online resources for migrants.
Julie is a research engineer in social cognition at Inria. Her work consists in using hyperscanning – which is a neuroimaging technique that allows the simultaneous recording of brain activities of two (or more) individuals engaged in social exchanges – to better understand the development of social skills in middle childhood. She has a master’s degree in integrative biology and physiology majoring in systems biology and neuroscience from Sorbonne Université. She has a keen interest in topics related to neuroscience, such as neurophysiology, psychology, and machine learning tools to understand how the social brain develops across ages. In her free time, she enjoys playing the piano, video/audio editing, and cycling.
Alafate is a doctoral student at INRIA and ENS/PSL. His primary area of research is the conversational strategies generation using cutting-edge NLG methods. Conversational strategies often refer to the ways of speaking that carry out the conversation helping the user to accomplish both task and social goals. He is also interested in various domains related to human-human interaction, such as dialogue reasoning, social science, and cognitive science. Before his Ph.D. program, he was a research intern in Université de Paris working on Dialogue and Semantics. He has a computer science engineering degree and a master’s degree in data science from Université de Tours. Lastly, he enjoys playing chess, reading, and writing in his spare time. You can find more info in his personal website.
Biswesh is a doctoral student at INRIA and ENS/PSL. His research interest lies in multi-modal computational models of human conversations. He has experience working in various other fields such as Computer Vision, Natural Language Processing, Semantic Web, and negotiation agents. Prior to starting his PhD, he worked as a research engineer at Articulab for a year where his primary role was to re-build the entire pipeline for SARA. He completed his Masters in Computer Science from IIIT Bangalore where he interned at companies like IBM Research, Seimens Research, and also was a Google Summer of Codes scholar where he contributed to the open-source organisation “OpenStreetMaps”. Outside the lab, you can find him taking part in hiking, playing badminton and singing terribly!!
More information could be found on his website.
Jade serves as lab manager of the ArticuLab and also as a research engineer at Inria/ENS. Her research is largely interested in using state-of-the-art neuroimaging techniques and interdisciplinary approaches to investigate creative and socially-informed questions about behavior, learning, and performance. She holds a Master of Science in Gerontology Research from the University of Southampton (UK) and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of New Orleans (USA). Her previous work has investigated the role of culture and bias in adaptations of behavioral assessments for diverse populations, cognitive event-related potentials of language and memory in older adults with dementia, and the use of brain modulation in developing language-therapy interventions for children with an autism spectrum disorder. Outside of the lab, Jade is an adept cook, an avid reader, and thoroughly enjoys a sunny day spent on a terrace with her dog, Guppy.
Seemab is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Computational Linguistics from the University of Stuttgart. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Information Technology University, Punjab, where she discovered her passion for Natural Language Processing (NLP). Her fascination with NLP motivated her to pursue further studies in this field. As part of her internship, she is currently building test cases to better understand large neural network-based dialog models. When not occupied with academic and professional activities, Seemab enjoys immersing herself in nature and expressing her creativity through her culinary Instagram page, @semifryday, where she shares her love for food and its simple pleasures.
Nina is an intern working on the automatic recognition of personality features in audio recordings of human conversations. She is currently enrolled in the Cogmaster at ENS, a master of cognitive science. She is specializing in semantics and computational linguistics. Last year she completed a double diploma in applied mathematics and computer sciences (ENSTA and Institut Polytechnique de Paris). She likes playing the piano, doing aerial silk (circus), and doing bike tours over several days.
Nina is interested in social science and cognitive anthropology. During her internship at INRIA, she focuses on annotations of non-verbal behaviors related to hedging and how conversational strategies differ between American and French contexts. Before her internship, she completed a literary preparatory course for ENS Lyon (khâgne) at Lycée Blomet and a dual undergraduate’s degree in history and geography at Sorbonne Université. During her free time, she enjoys having coffee.
Isaac is an intern at INRIA while he finishes his M2 in computational linguistics at Universite Paris Cite. He is mainly interested in artificial dialogue and its potential applications, especially regarding social AI and human-computer interaction. He believes that by better understanding natural language generation in a dialogue setting, we can pave the way for safer and more responsible collaberation with AI-based systems. Before INRIA, he completed his Bachelor’s in Linguistics at Cornell University, with a focus on the typology and morphology of indigenous Australian languages. Work aside, Isaac enjoys rock climbing and playing chess.
Charlotte is a research intern at INRIA Paris. She is working on unveiling the neural mechanisms underlying interpersonal processes in pairs of children, especially, how their brain activity aligns in phase and amplitude across time (inter-brain synchrony). She is currently enrolled in the dual master’s degree in Brain and Mind sciences between University College London (UCL), Sorbonne Université and ENS/PSL and owns a BSc in Biomedical sciences from UCL. She is driven by a strong curiosity to understand the mechanisms underlying nervous systems and associated behaviours. She has a keen interest in the disciplines investigating the cognitive processes of human thought, knowledge and decision-making. In her free time, she really enjoys going to concerts and shows as well as listening to music.
Ioana is an intern at Inria. She is working with hyperscanning technique to explore inter-brain synchrony and behavioural features related to social interaction in children in the context of computer-mediated interactions. She has a bachelor in Psychology and Language Sciences at Univeristy College London and a master in Neuroscience at Univeristy College London and Sorbonne University. She is interested in the neuropsychology of language and language pathologies as well as how linguistic abilities relate to other cognitive and social abilities. In her spare time she enjoy climbing, watching movies and dancing.