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Hierarchical clustering of speakers into accents with the ACCDIST metric

Huckvale, M; (2007) Hierarchical clustering of speakers into accents with the ACCDIST metric. In: Proc. International Congress of Phonetic Sciences. ICPhS: Saarbrücken, Germany. Green open access

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Abstract

Hierarchical clustering of speakers by their pronunciation patterns could be a useful technique for the discovery of accents and the relationships between accents and sociological variables. However it is first necessary to ensure that the clustering is not influenced by the physical characteristics of the speakers. In this study a number of approaches to agglomerative hierarchical clustering of 275 speakers from 14 regional accent groups of the British Isles are formally evaluated. The ACCDIST metric is shown to have superior performance both in terms of accent purity in the cluster tree and in terms of the interpretability of the higher-levels of the tree. Although operating from robust spectral envelope features, the ACCDIST measure also showed the least sensitivity to speaker gender. The conclusion is that, if performed with care, hierarchical clustering could be a useful technique for discovery of accent groups from the bottom up.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Hierarchical clustering of speakers into accents with the ACCDIST metric
Event: International Congress of Phonetic Sciences
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.icphs2007.de/
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Speech, Hearing and Phonetic Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/74320
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