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Dr. Agha Ali Raza

Assistant Professor
PhD in Computer Science/Language Technologies – Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Speech and Language Technologies, Designing interfaces for the low-literate, Telephone-based Speech Interfaces for Access to Information by Non-literate Users, Speech Recognition.

Mr. Agha Ali Raza is a Fulbright Scholar who has a PhD from the Language Technologies Institute, School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, USA. He received his Master of Computer Science and Bachelor of Computer Science degrees from FAST-NU, Lahore. He has several years of teaching experience as a member of the Computer Science permanent faculty at FAST-NU. His research interests include Speech-based Human Computer Interfaces, telephone-based automated dialog systems, Information & Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D) and Natural Language Processing with a focus on the use of Speech & Language Technologies for Development. He has authored/co-authored more than 11 research papers in peer-reviewed conferences. The aim of his current research is to enable dissemination of speech-based, development-related information and communication services to low-literate telephone users throughout the developing world; without the benefit of explicit user training. His work shows that speech-based simple entertainment services can be used as powerful motivators to induce self-training and viral spread among low-literate masses. Such services can further be used as vehicles for delivering core development services and as experimental test-beds for performing randomized controlled trials and demographic studies. His recent work on Polly won the best paper award at CHI-2013 conference.