1st Workshop on Mixed-Initiative ConveRsatiOnal Systems (MICROS)
Workshop held in conjunction with the 43rd European Conference on Information Retrieval (ECIR 2021)			
Lucca, Tuscany, Italy  ** March 28 - April 1, 2021 ** ONLINE EVENT **

Website: https://micros2021.github.io/

Submission link: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=micros2021

Submission deadline: December 20, 2020																	



The increasing popularity of personal assistant systems and smartphones has drawn attention to conversational systems. Thanks to the recent advances in automatic speech recognition and voice generation, conversational systems are largely employed in smart-home devices (e.g., Google Home, Amazon Alexa) as well as wearable devices (e.g., Apple Siri, Microsoft Cortana).

The 1st Edition of the Workshop on Mixed-Initiative ConveRsatiOnal Systems (MICROS@ECIR2021) aims at investigating and collecting novel ideas and contributions in the field of conversational systems. These systems provide a conversational interface for different tasks ranging from seeking information to performing e-commerce transactions.

MICROS aims to bring together researchers from academia and industry to discuss the challenges and future of conversational systems. The workshop will have a particular focus on mixed-initiative conversational systems. These proactive systems do not simply provide answers but also propose possible interpretations for ambiguous and vague requests, improving the user's information-seeking experience.

We invite people working on conversational search as well as interactive recommendation to send us their position and research papers. Novel approaches for conversational information seeking that are based on natural language processing and artificial intelligence are also welcome. We encourage submissions on approaches for conversational search, recommendation, evaluation techniques, data creation and curation, as well as domain-specific applications for conversational systems. The workshop will prioritize innovative and impactful contributions, all the accepted papers will be presented as contribution talks and will have the opportunity to be published in the CEUR proceedings. The workshop will also have keynote talks by experienced researchers and a panel discussion to share insights about conversational systems.				

** TOPICS **																								
The workshop topics include but are not limited to:

- Applications of conversational search and recommendation systems													
      - Large-scale retrieval candidate responses (e.g., documents, passages) in conversational search
      - Conversational and question-based recommendation systems
      - Tracking information-need evolution during the conversation (e.g., context changes)		
      - Processing and rewriting of natural language conversational queries		
      - Relevance feedback in conversational search

- Mixed-initiative interaction systems, such as clarification and preference elicitation in conversational systems							      
      - Dialogue schema for conversational search		
      - Conversational navigation of search results
      - Conversation history understanding and query modeling
      - Pro-active search and recommendation interactions in conversational search

- Deep learning and reinforcement learning for conversational search			
      - Conversational question answering		
      - Result summarization, explanation, and presentation in conversational search			
      - Balance and bias for more inclusive conversational systems	

- Multi-modal interactions for conversational interfaces (e.g., speech-only and small-screen interfaces)
      - Voice-based search engine operations
      - User intent and dialog state tracking in conversational search			
      - Personalization and user models for conversational search

- Specialized applications and use cases for conversational search (e.g., health, finance, travel)

- Knowledge graph presentation in conversational search

- Data creation and curation for conversational search

- Evaluation metrics for effectiveness, engagement, user satisfaction of conversational systems


Authors should submit their papers by December 20, 2020 (23:59 AoE) via EasyChair (https://easychair.org/account/signin?l=Iafva8iWbEJiuiSAwohoMJ#).			
Submitted papers should be in the Springer LNCS format. The workshop has a single-blind reviewing process, so the submissions can include the name and affiliations of authors.

The following paper categories are welcome:
- research papers on novel, original, and unpublished work (pre-prints submitted to ArXiv are eligible). Max length: 10 pages, plus references
- extended abstracts summarizing published results. Max length: 5 pages, plus references

All accepted works will be presented at the workshop. Moreover, the research papers can be included in an open-access post-proceedings volume of CEUR Workshop Proceedings (http://ceur-ws.org/).	


- Submission deadline: December 20, 2020 (23:59 AoE)
- Notification: February 5, 2021


- Workshop website: https://micros2021.github.io/
- EasyChair CFP: https://easychair.org/cfp/micros2021
- EasyChair submission page: https://easychair.org/account/signin?l=Iafva8iWbEJiuiSAwohoMJ#
- Twitter: @micros2021																			

** ORGANIZERS **																			

- Ida Mele (IASI-CNR Rome, IT)
- Cristina Ioana Muntean (ISTI-CNR Pisa, IT)
- Mohammad Aliannejadi (University of Amsterdam, NL)
- Nikos Voskarides (University of Amsterdam, NL)

Any questions about submissions can be emailed to the organizers: ida.mele@iasi.cnr.it, cristina.muntean@isti.cnr.it, m.aliannejadi@uva.nl, n.voskarides@uva.nl