I'm director of the Interaction Lab in the  Dept of Computer Science at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, working in AI and natural language processing. I previously worked at Edinburgh and Stanford Universities.  

I work on machine learning methods for intelligent and adaptive multimodal interfaces, including Speech Recognition, Spoken Language Understanding, Natural Language Generation, and Human-Robot Interaction. I have also applied this work in Technology Enhanced Learning using Virtual Characters. See my publications (bibtex here).

I am an associate editor of ACM Transactions on Interactive Intelligent Systems, and previously of ACM Transactions on Speech and Language Processingand on the editorial board of Dialogue and Discourse

How to apply for a Phd: here


  • EC Horizon 2020 project "MuMMER" accepted - on Human-Robot Interaction - starting March 2016
  • New EPSRC project funded: BABBLE (2015): domain-general methods for learning natural spoken dialogue systems
  • New EPSRC project funded: DILIGENT: Domain-Independent Language Generation (2015)
  • Area Co-chair: Discourse, Dialogue, and Pragmatics, EMNLP 2015
  • Human-Robot Interaction: talk at Robotarium kick off event, 2014. 
  • Invited talk at Nuance, California 29/5/13 
  • Advisory Board:  Dialog State Tracking Challenges (2013 - ongoing)
  • Steering Committee: RefNet EPSRC network

Research team/Interaction Lab:

  • Heriberto Cuayahuitl
  • Ioannis Efstathiou    
  • Arash Eshghi    
  • Dimitra Gkatzia     
  • Srini Janarthanam   
  • Simon Keizer           
  • Xingkun Liu           
  • Wenshuo Tang        
  • Yanchao Yu   


Currently (co-)supervising 3 PhD students.

Dept/School duties

IRIS room development (Intelligent Room for Interaction Science)
RMAS user group
Robotarium Management Committee
Edinburgh Centre for Robotics/CDT
Open days 2012-2014: speech tech and robotics demos
Mentoring / probation: 2 Lecturers
REF return 2013: internal reviewer
Postgraduate Induction events
Scottish Crucible
Interview panels
Hiring committees
Exam moderator: Critical Thinking
Internal reviewer: EPSRC and EC grant proposals

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Twitter Timeline @oliverlemon

Recent research projects:

  • JAMES (FP7) : socially intelligent multimodal Human-Robot Interaction
  • SpaceBook (FP7) : spatially-aware mobile speech interfaces 
  • Help4Mood (FP7) : virtual characters for health applications
  • STAC (ERC) : non-cooperative strategic dialogue agents
  • PARLANCE (FP7) : incremental mobile statistical spoken dialogue systems
  • SpeechCity (EPSRC Impact Acceleration) : mobile speech apps for city dwellers

Completed Projects:

 http://www.classic-project.org (Coordinator, EC FP7, 2008-2011)
"Computational Learning in Adaptive Systems for Spoken Conversation" 

TALK: EC FP6 (Scientific Coordinator, 2004-2006)

ECHOES: ESRC/EPSRC Technology Enhanced Learning 
(Principal Investigator) (2008-2011)

Advanced Dialogue Tools ("DUDE"): Scottish Enterprise (Principal Investigator) (2008-2009)

EPSRC: End-to End Statistical Dialogue Systems
 ("StatDial"):   (Principal Investigator) (2007-2009)