Context-aware recommender systems for real-world applications

Abstract : Recommender systems have proven to be valuable tools to help users overcome the information overload, and significant advances have been made in the field over the last two decades. In particular, contextual information has been leveraged to model the dynamics occurring within users and items. Context is a complex notion and its traditional definition, which is adopted in most recommender systems, fails to cope with several issues occurring in real-world applications. In this thesis, we address the problems of partially observable and unobservable contexts in two particular applications, hotel recommendation and online recommendation, challenging several aspects of the traditional definition of context, including accessibility, relevance, acquisition, and modeling.The first part of the thesis investigates the problem of hotel recommendation which suffers from the continuous cold-start issue, limiting the performance of classical approaches for recommendation. Traveling is not a frequent activity and users tend to have multifaceted behaviors depending on their specific situation. Following an analysis of the user behavior in this domain, we propose novel recommendation approaches integrating partially observable context affecting users and we show how it contributes in improving the recommendation quality.The second part of the thesis addresses the problem of online adaptive recommendation in streaming environments where data is continuously generated. Users and items may depend on some unobservable context and can evolve in different ways and at different rates. We propose to perform online recommendation by actively detecting drifts and updating models accordingly in real-time. We design novel methods adapting to changes occurring in user preferences, item perceptions, and item descriptions, and show the importance of online adaptive recommendation to ensure a good performance over time.
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Marie Al-Ghossein. Context-aware recommender systems for real-world applications. Artificial Intelligence [cs.AI]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2019. English. ⟨NNT : 2019SACLT008⟩. ⟨tel-02275811⟩

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