About me:

 I am a full Professor at the School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences (MACS) at Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh. I am director of the HWU NLP labI am affiliated to the Interaction Lab, the HRI lab and the Edinburgh Centre for Robotics My main research is on Spoken Dialogue Systems and interactive Natural Language Generation

You pronounce my name [f e: r e: n a]   [r i: z ɐ]

Also see my page on GoogleScholar.
Book published!

Also see my lab's homepage.

How to apply for a PhD.

Current research projects :

  1. Gender Bias in Conversational AI (PI) (EPSRC, EP/T023767/1, 2020-2023)
  2. AISEC (Co-I) - Secure and Explainable AI (EPSRC, EP/T026952/1, 2020-2023)
  3. MaDrIgAL (PI)- MultiDimensional Interaction management and Adaptive Learning (EPSRC, EP/N017536/1, 2016-2020)

Completed research projects :

  1. Amazon Alexa Challenge (2017 & 2018)
  2. DILiGENt (PI) - Domain-Independent Language Generation (EPSRC, EP/M005429/1, 2015-2018).
  3. LUCINE  (PI)-  Learning User preferenCes by INtEraction (DataLab, EPSRC Impact Acceleration Award - Collaborative Innovation project with EmoTech2016-2018)
  4. Data-to-Text Generation under Uncertainty (PI, EPSRC, 2014-16)


  1. Simon Keizer (Co-I)
  2. Ondrej Dusek (RA)
  3. Xinkun Liu (RA)
  4. Jekaterina Novikova (RA)
  5. Shubham Agarwal (PhD student)
  6. Amanda Curry (PhD student)
  7. Karin Sevegnani (PhD student)
  8. Xinnuo Xu (PhD student)


  • Invited talks It's my pleasure to speak at Apple's NLU workshop 2020, the EMNLP workshop on Search-oriented ConvAI, and SLT 2021.
    Posted 21 Jul 2020, 00:34 by Verena Rieser
  • RSE Investigates AI I had the honour to speak at the Royal Society's  programme on AI. Here is a video.  There were 60 attendees watching from the UK, Germany, USA, UAE, Malaysia ...
    Posted 7 Jul 2020, 07:06 by Verena Rieser
  • SigDial2020 BreakOut Session Thank you everybody who contributed to the very enjoyable @sigdial breakout session on "Best practices in human evaluation of dialogue and NLG - More art than science?" Notes are available here
    Posted 3 Jul 2020, 07:10 by Verena Rieser
  • Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowship I am thrilled to have been awarded a Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowship sponsored by the Royal Society!
    Posted 1 Jul 2020, 06:59 by Verena Rieser
  • Royal Society's AI Strategy for Scotland I'm very happy that I was invited to contribute to the Royal Society of Edinburgh's response to Scotland's AI Strategy. Read more here.
    Posted 29 May 2020, 06:38 by Verena Rieser
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