Journal of Logic, Language and Information

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 365–385

Dialogue Coherence: A Generation Framework

Open Access


This paper presents a framework for the generation of coherent elementary conversational sequences at the speech act level. We will embrace the notion of a cooperative dialogue game in which two players produce speech acts to transfer relevant information with respect to their commitments. Central to the approach is that participants try to achieve some sort of balanced cognitive state as a result of speech act generation and interpretation. Cognitive states of the participants change as a result of the interpretation of speech acts and these changes provoke the production of a subsequent speech act. Describing the properties and the dynamics of the mental constructs that constitute the participants’ cognitive states, such as beliefs and commitments, in relation to the various dialogue contributions is an essential aspect of the game. Although simple in its basic form, the framework enables us to produce abstract conversations with some properties that agree strikingly with coherence structures found in, for instance, Conversation Analysis.


Cooperative dialogue games Speech act generation Cognitive state update Cognitive balance Commitments Beliefs 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Science, Department of Information and Computing SciencesUtrecht UniversityUtrechtThe Netherlands

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