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Robust Emotion Recognition in Context Debiasing

Dingkang Yang · Kun Yang · Mingcheng Li · Shunli Wang · Shuaibing Wang · Lihua Zhang

Arch 4A-E Poster #273
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Thu 20 Jun 10:30 a.m. PDT — noon PDT


Context-aware emotion recognition (CAER) has recently boosted the practical applications of affective computing techniques in unconstrained environments. Mainstream CAER methods invariably extract ensemble representations from diverse contexts and subject-centred characteristics to perceive the target person's emotional state. Despite advancements, the biggest challenge remains due to context bias interference. The harmful bias forces the models to rely on spurious correlations between background contexts and emotion labels in likelihood estimation, causing severe performance bottlenecks and confounding valuable context priors. In this paper, we propose a counterfactual emotion inference (CLEF) framework to address the above issue. Specifically, we first formulate a generalized causal graph to decouple the causal relationships among the variables in CAER. Following the causal graph, CLEF introduces a non-invasive context branch to capture the adverse direct effect caused by the context bias. During the inference, we eliminate the direct context effect from the total causal effect by comparing factual and counterfactual outcomes, resulting in bias mitigation and robust prediction.As a model-agnostic framework, CLEF can be readily integrated into existing methods, bringing consistent performance gains.

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