Gender Neutralisation for Unbiased Speech Synthesising


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Rizhinashvili D., Sham A. H. , Anbarjafari G.

ELECTRONICS, vol.11, no.10, 2022 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 10
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/electronics11101594
  • Title of Journal : ELECTRONICS
  • Keywords: responsible AI, speech analysis, emotion recognition, gender bias

Abstract

Machine learning can encode and amplify negative biases or stereotypes already present in humans, resulting in high-profile cases. There can be multiple sources encoding the negative bias in these algorithms, like errors from human labelling, inaccurate representation of different population groups in training datasets, and chosen model structures and optimization methods. Our paper proposes a novel approach to speech processing that can resolve the gender bias problem by eliminating the gender parameter. Therefore, we devised a system that transforms the input sound (speech of a person) into a neutralized voice to the point where the gender of the speaker becomes indistinguishable by both humans and AI. Wav2Vec based network has been utilised to conduct speech gender recognition to validate the main claim of this research work, which is the neutralisation of gender from the speech. Such a system can be used as a batch pre-processing layer for training models, thus making associated gender bias irrelevant. Further, such a system can also find its application where speaker gender bias by humans is also prominent, as the listener will not be able to judge the gender from speech.