Odyssey 2016

The Speaker and Language Recognition Workshop

Identification of British English regional accents using fusion of i-vector and multi-accent phonotactic systems

Maryam Najafian, Saeid Safavi, Phil Weber, Martin Russell
The para-linguistic information in a speech signal includes clues to the geographical and social background of the speaker. This paper is concerned with recognition of the 14 regional accents of British English. For Accent Identification (AID), acoustic methods exploit differences between the distributions of sounds, while phonotactic approaches exploit the sequences in which these sounds occur. We demonstrate these methods are good complements for each other and use their confusion matrices for further analysis. Our relatively simple i-vector and phonotactic fused system with recognition accuracy of 84.87% outperforms the i-vector fused results reported in literature, by 4.7%. Further analysis on distribution of British English accents has been carried out by analyzing the low dimensional representation of i-vector AID feature space.