Speakers

FEDERICO ANG
Research Scientist, Rakuten Institute of Technology, Japan

Title
Towards Practical Speech Recognition Systems: Perspectives and Challenges

Abstract
This talk will present an overview of existing research efforts in the development of automatic speech recognition (ASR) systems for low-resource tasks.  The speaker will relate his training in the academe and the industry in developing ASR systems for real-world applications to the practical challenges that future researchers and developers will face in developing practical low-resource ASR systems, and introduce tools and techniques already being used to solve the aforementioned challenges.


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Federico Ang received his B.S. degree in computer engineering and M.S. degree in electrical engineering from the University of the Philippines, Diliman, in 2007 and 2009, respectively, and his Ph.D. degree in Media and Network Technologies from Hokkaido University, Japan in 2015.  His experience in toolkit based speech recognition system development started in 2008 when he trained as a researcher at Mobile Technologies, LLC while a guest researcher at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany.  Since then, he has been involved in multidisciplinary projects and research, particularly in Filipino speech recognition, speaker recognition, speech synthesis, and speech conversion, while working as an assistant professor in the Philippines, specializing in digital signal processing for more than 5 years.  Today, he still works as a speech technology research scientist to provide voice-related interfacing solutions for Rakuten Japan, an e-commerce company.


ARIANE BORLONGAN (website)
Lecturer in Sociolinguistics, School of Language and Culture Studies, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies

Title
Filipinos speak the way they write(?): Corpus-based findings on stylistic variation in Philippine English

Abstract
Among the most persistent characterizations of Philippine English is that it is stylistically homogenous. In this paper, I shall (1) narrate how and why Philippine English has been described as stylisitically homogenous, (2) review recent corpus-based studies which make comparisons of Philippine English registers, (3) comment on the evolution of Philippine English as a new English using stylistic variation as a measure of developmental progression. Methodology-wise, I also intend to discuss how these findings (as well as contemporary corpus-based methodology) may more accurately describe stylistic variation in Philippine English (in particular) and the evolution of Philippine English (in general).

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Ariane Macalinga Borlongan earned his Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics at age 23 via a competitive accelerated program in De La Salle University (Manila, the Philippines). His dissertation titled ‘A Grammar of the Verb in Philippine English’ was supervised by Professor Emerita Ma. Lourdes Bautista, was recognized as Most Outstanding Dissertation by De La Salle University, and will be published by the De La Salle University Publishing House in 2020. At present, he is Lecturer in Sociolinguistics at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies (Japan). He was previously with De La Salle University, Tamagawa University (Tokyo, Japan), and The University of Tokyo (Japan) and also held/will hold visiting posts at the the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore), SEAMEO Regional Language Centre (Singapore), the University of Freiburg (Germany), The University of Malaya (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), and the University of Zurich (Switzerland). He is Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts (RSA). He was awarded The Br. Andrew Gonzalez FSC Distinguished Professorial Chair in Linguistics and Language Education by the Linguistic Society of the Philippines and De La Salle University in 2019. He edited Philippine English: Development, Structure, and Sociology of English in the Philippines, to be published by Routledge in 2019, which serves as the handbook of Philippine English and a festschrift in honor of Prof. Bautista. He is Director of the Philippine component of the International Corpus of English (ICE-PH) and is also the compiler of the Philippine parallels to the Brown and the Before-Brown corpora (Phil-Brown and PBB respectively) and the Diachronic Corpora of Expanding Circle Englishes (DCECE) and co-compiler to the Malaysian parallel to the Brown Corpus (Mal-Brown). His teaching and research have focused on sociolinguistics, world Englishes, English linguistics, and historical linguistics.


SHIRLEY DITA (website)
Associate Professor, Department of English and Applied Linguistics, De La Salle University

Title
The Phonology of Philippine English

Abstract
The first recognition, arguably, of Philippine English as a distinct, nativized variety, was in the late 1960s with Llamzon’s (1969) controversial publication, Standard Filipino English. Since then, there have been a copious body of research on the different aspects of this emerging variety – lexical, grammatical, discoursal, and phonological studies. But the latter appears to be the least explored of all the areas. This presentation will focus on the phonology of Philippine English by tracing the literature from Llamzon’s (1997) pioneering work to Tayao’s (2004) groundbreaking work which used sociolectal approach. Likewise, more recent studies that looked into the other dimensions of English(es) as spoken in the Philippines (e.g., Berowa, 2019) and those that use a different approach (cf. Lesho, 2017; Lee & Low, 2019) are included. Additionally, a more pressing issue relevant to phonology is the intelligibility and comprehensibility of these new Englishes. Works on the intelligibility of Philippine English (cf. Dita & De Leon, 2017; De Leon & Dita, 2019) are likewise discussed in the presentation, focusing on the relevance of research on these areas in this time and age.

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Shirley N. Dita is Associate Professor of the Department of English and Applied Linguistics of De La Salle University, the Philippines and Director of the Lasallian Institute for Development and Educational Research (LIDER). She holds a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics from the same university where she graduated With Distinction. She was a Visiting Professor at the School of Education at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa from August to September, 2016, a visiting contributing scholar at the University of Sydney, Australia in July 2018, and visiting scholar at the University of Macau in December 2018.

Shirley considers World Englishes, Corpus Linguistics, and Austronesian Linguistics as her areas of interest.  She has given various presentations, either as Keynote, Plenary, workshop, themed panel, or paper, on these areas here and abroad. She is mentoring PhD and MA students on these topics and is a strong advocate of MTB-MLE and indigenous languages in the Philippines, as well.

Shirley is the Immediate Past President of the Linguistic Society of the Philippines (LSP), the Executive Secretary of the Asian Association for Lexicography (AsiaLex), the organizer of Action Research, Action Learning (ARAL) international congress and a member of the Executive Board of the Southeast Asian Linguistic Society (SEALS) and the International Conference on Austronesian Linguistics (ICAL).


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