Call for Participation/Papers: VIHAR-2017

1st International Workshop on Vocal Interactivity in-and-between Humans, Animals and Robots (VIHAR-2017)


1st International Workshop on Vocal Interactivity in-and-between Humans, Animals and Robots (VIHAR-2017)

25-26 August 2017
University of Skövde, Sweden

Almost all animals exploit vocal signals for a range of ecologically-motivated purposes: from detecting predators/prey and marking territory, to expressing emotions, establishing social relations and sharing information. Whether it’s a bird raising an alarm, a whale calling to potential partners, a dog responding to human commands, a parent reading a story with a child, or a businessperson accessing stock prices using Siri on an iPhone, vocalisation provides a valuable communications channel through which behaviour may be coordinated and controlled, and information may be distributed and acquired. Indeed, the ubiquity of vocal interaction has led to research across an extremely diverse array of fields, from assessing animal welfare, to understanding the precursors of human language, to developing voice-based human-machine interaction. Clearly, there is potential for cross-fertilisation between disciplines; for example, using robots to investigate contemporary theories of language grounding, using machine learning to analyse different habitats or adding vocal expressivity to the next generation of autonomous social agents. However, many opportunities remain unexplored, not least due to the lack of a suitable forum.

VIHAR-2017 aims to bring together researchers studying vocalisations and speech-based interaction in-and- between humans, animals and robots from a variety of different fields. The workshop is being organised by participants of a recent Dagstuhl Seminar on the same topic, and follows the publication of a short review article: VIHAR-2017 will provide a timely opportunity for scientists and engineers from different fields to share theoretical insights, best practices, tools and methodologies, and to identify common principles underpinning vocal behaviour in a multi-disciplinary environment.

We invite original submissions of four-page INTERSPEECH-style papers (plus one page of references) or two-page extended abstracts (including references) in all areas of vocal interactivity. Suggested workshop topics may include, but are not limited to, the following areas:
* physiological and morphological similarities/differences between vocal systems in animals
* properties and functions of animal signals
* evolution of vocal interactivity
* vocal imitation and learning
* conveyance of emotion
* comparative analyses of human and animal vocalisations
* use of vocalisation
* vocal interactivity between non-conspecifics
* spoken language systems
* technology-based research methods

Paper submissions should conform to the format as detailed in the INTERSPEECH 2017 Author’s Kit (

Key Dates:
Submission deadline - 2 June 2017
Notification of acceptance - 30 June 2017
Workshop - 25-26 August 2017

Robert Eklund, Linköping University
Angela Dassow, Carthage College
Ricard Marxer, University of Sheffield
Roger K. Moore, University of Sheffield
Bhiksha Raj, Carnegie Mellon University
Rita Singh, Carnegie Mellon University
Serge Thill, University of Skövde
Benjamin Weiss, Technical University of Berlin

VIHAR-2017 takes place immediately after INTERSPEECH in Stockholm ( and is supported by the International Speech Communication Association (

For details, visit the VIHAR-2017 website:

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