In light of the emergence of deep reinforcement learning (DRL) in recommender systems research and several fruitful results in recent years, this survey aims to provide a timely and comprehensive overview of the recent trends of deep reinforcement learning in recommender systems. We start with the motivation of applying DRL in recommender systems. Then, we provide a taxonomy of current DRL-based recommender systems and a summary of existing methods. We discuss emerging topics and open issues, and provide our perspective on advancing the domain. This survey serves as introductory material for readers from academia and industry into the topic and identifies notable opportunities for further research.
Recommender system is one of the most important information services on today's Internet. Recently, graph neural networks have become the new state-of-the-art approach of recommender systems. In this survey, we conduct a comprehensive review of the literature in graph neural network-based recommender systems. We first introduce the background and the history of the development of both recommender systems and graph neural networks. For recommender systems, in general, there are four aspects for categorizing existing works: stage, scenario, objective, and application. For graph neural networks, the existing methods consist of two categories, spectral models and spatial ones. We then discuss the motivation of applying graph neural networks into recommender systems, mainly consisting of the high-order connectivity, the structural property of data, and the enhanced supervision signal. We then systematically analyze the challenges in graph construction, embedding propagation/aggregation, model optimization, and computation efficiency. Afterward and primarily, we provide a comprehensive overview of a multitude of existing works of graph neural network-based recommender systems, following the taxonomy above. Finally, we raise discussions on the open problems and promising future directions of this area. We summarize the representative papers along with their codes repositories in https://github.com/tsinghua-fib-lab/GNN-Recommender-Systems.
Recommender systems have been widely applied in different real-life scenarios to help us find useful information. Recently, Reinforcement Learning (RL) based recommender systems have become an emerging research topic. It often surpasses traditional recommendation models even most deep learning-based methods, owing to its interactive nature and autonomous learning ability. Nevertheless, there are various challenges of RL when applying in recommender systems. Toward this end, we firstly provide a thorough overview, comparisons, and summarization of RL approaches for five typical recommendation scenarios, following three main categories of RL: value-function, policy search, and Actor-Critic. Then, we systematically analyze the challenges and relevant solutions on the basis of existing literature. Finally, under discussion for open issues of RL and its limitations of recommendation, we highlight some potential research directions in this field.
Dialogue systems are a popular Natural Language Processing (NLP) task as it is promising in real-life applications. It is also a complicated task since many NLP tasks deserving study are involved. As a result, a multitude of novel works on this task are carried out, and most of them are deep learning-based due to the outstanding performance. In this survey, we mainly focus on the deep learning-based dialogue systems. We comprehensively review state-of-the-art research outcomes in dialogue systems and analyze them from two angles: model type and system type. Specifically, from the angle of model type, we discuss the principles, characteristics, and applications of different models that are widely used in dialogue systems. This will help researchers acquaint these models and see how they are applied in state-of-the-art frameworks, which is rather helpful when designing a new dialogue system. From the angle of system type, we discuss task-oriented and open-domain dialogue systems as two streams of research, providing insight into the hot topics related. Furthermore, we comprehensively review the evaluation methods and datasets for dialogue systems to pave the way for future research. Finally, some possible research trends are identified based on the recent research outcomes. To the best of our knowledge, this survey is the most comprehensive and up-to-date one at present in the area of dialogue systems and dialogue-related tasks, extensively covering the popular frameworks, topics, and datasets.
Recent advances in research have demonstrated the effectiveness of knowledge graphs (KG) in providing valuable external knowledge to improve recommendation systems (RS). A knowledge graph is capable of encoding high-order relations that connect two objects with one or multiple related attributes. With the help of the emerging Graph Neural Networks (GNN), it is possible to extract both object characteristics and relations from KG, which is an essential factor for successful recommendations. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive survey of the GNN-based knowledge-aware deep recommender systems. Specifically, we discuss the state-of-the-art frameworks with a focus on their core component, i.e., the graph embedding module, and how they address practical recommendation issues such as scalability, cold-start and so on. We further summarize the commonly-used benchmark datasets, evaluation metrics as well as open-source codes. Finally, we conclude the survey and propose potential research directions in this rapidly growing field.
To solve the information explosion problem and enhance user experience in various online applications, recommender systems have been developed to model users preferences. Although numerous efforts have been made toward more personalized recommendations, recommender systems still suffer from several challenges, such as data sparsity and cold start. In recent years, generating recommendations with the knowledge graph as side information has attracted considerable interest. Such an approach can not only alleviate the abovementioned issues for a more accurate recommendation, but also provide explanations for recommended items. In this paper, we conduct a systematical survey of knowledge graph-based recommender systems. We collect recently published papers in this field and summarize them from two perspectives. On the one hand, we investigate the proposed algorithms by focusing on how the papers utilize the knowledge graph for accurate and explainable recommendation. On the other hand, we introduce datasets used in these works. Finally, we propose several potential research directions in this field.
Deep learning has been shown successful in a number of domains, ranging from acoustics, images to natural language processing. However, applying deep learning to the ubiquitous graph data is non-trivial because of the unique characteristics of graphs. Recently, a significant amount of research efforts have been devoted to this area, greatly advancing graph analyzing techniques. In this survey, we comprehensively review different kinds of deep learning methods applied to graphs. We divide existing methods into three main categories: semi-supervised methods including Graph Neural Networks and Graph Convolutional Networks, unsupervised methods including Graph Autoencoders, and recent advancements including Graph Recurrent Neural Networks and Graph Reinforcement Learning. We then provide a comprehensive overview of these methods in a systematic manner following their history of developments. We also analyze the differences of these methods and how to composite different architectures. Finally, we briefly outline their applications and discuss potential future directions.
We give an overview of recent exciting achievements of deep reinforcement learning (RL). We discuss six core elements, six important mechanisms, and twelve applications. We start with background of machine learning, deep learning and reinforcement learning. Next we discuss core RL elements, including value function, in particular, Deep Q-Network (DQN), policy, reward, model, planning, and exploration. After that, we discuss important mechanisms for RL, including attention and memory, unsupervised learning, transfer learning, multi-agent RL, hierarchical RL, and learning to learn. Then we discuss various applications of RL, including games, in particular, AlphaGo, robotics, natural language processing, including dialogue systems, machine translation, and text generation, computer vision, neural architecture design, business management, finance, healthcare, Industry 4.0, smart grid, intelligent transportation systems, and computer systems. We mention topics not reviewed yet, and list a collection of RL resources. After presenting a brief summary, we close with discussions. Please see Deep Reinforcement Learning, arXiv:1810.06339, for a significant update.
Explainable Recommendation refers to the personalized recommendation algorithms that address the problem of why -- they not only provide the user with the recommendations, but also make the user aware why such items are recommended by generating recommendation explanations, which help to improve the effectiveness, efficiency, persuasiveness, and user satisfaction of recommender systems. In recent years, a large number of explainable recommendation approaches -- especially model-based explainable recommendation algorithms -- have been proposed and adopted in real-world systems. In this survey, we review the work on explainable recommendation that has been published in or before the year of 2018. We first high-light the position of explainable recommendation in recommender system research by categorizing recommendation problems into the 5W, i.e., what, when, who, where, and why. We then conduct a comprehensive survey of explainable recommendation itself in terms of three aspects: 1) We provide a chronological research line of explanations in recommender systems, including the user study approaches in the early years, as well as the more recent model-based approaches. 2) We provide a taxonomy for explainable recommendation algorithms, including user-based, item-based, model-based, and post-model explanations. 3) We summarize the application of explainable recommendation in different recommendation tasks, including product recommendation, social recommendation, POI recommendation, etc. We devote a chapter to discuss the explanation perspectives in the broader IR and machine learning settings, as well as their relationship with explainable recommendation research. We end the survey by discussing potential future research directions to promote the explainable recommendation research area.
Music recommender systems (MRS) have experienced a boom in recent years, thanks to the emergence and success of online streaming services, which nowadays make available almost all music in the world at the user's fingertip. While today's MRS considerably help users to find interesting music in these huge catalogs, MRS research is still facing substantial challenges. In particular when it comes to build, incorporate, and evaluate recommendation strategies that integrate information beyond simple user--item interactions or content-based descriptors, but dig deep into the very essence of listener needs, preferences, and intentions, MRS research becomes a big endeavor and related publications quite sparse. The purpose of this trends and survey article is twofold. We first identify and shed light on what we believe are the most pressing challenges MRS research is facing, from both academic and industry perspectives. We review the state of the art towards solving these challenges and discuss its limitations. Second, we detail possible future directions and visions we contemplate for the further evolution of the field. The article should therefore serve two purposes: giving the interested reader an overview of current challenges in MRS research and providing guidance for young researchers by identifying interesting, yet under-researched, directions in the field.
With the ever-growing volume, complexity and dynamicity of online information, recommender system has been an effective key solution to overcome such information overload. In recent years, deep learning's revolutionary advances in speech recognition, image analysis and natural language processing have gained significant attention. Meanwhile, recent studies also demonstrate its effectiveness in coping with information retrieval and recommendation tasks. Applying deep learning techniques into recommender system has been gaining momentum due to its state-of-the-art performances and high-quality recommendations. In contrast to traditional recommendation models, deep learning provides a better understanding of user's demands, item's characteristics and historical interactions between them. This article aims to provide a comprehensive review of recent research efforts on deep learning based recommender systems towards fostering innovations of recommender system research. A taxonomy of deep learning based recommendation models is presented and used to categorize the surveyed articles. Open problems are identified based on the analytics of the reviewed works and potential solutions discussed.