Improving Few-shot News Recommendation via Cross-lingual Transfer

by   Taicheng Guo, et al.

The cold-start problem has been commonly recognized in recommendation systems and studied by following a general idea to leverage the abundant interaction records of warm users to infer the preference of cold users. However, the performance of these solutions is limited by the amount of records available from warm users to use. Thus, building a recommendation system based on few interaction records from a few users still remains a challenging problem for unpopular or early-stage recommendation platforms. This paper focuses on solving the few-shot recommendation problem for news recommendation based on two observations. First, news at different platforms (even in different languages) may share similar topics. Second, the user preference over these topics is transferable across different platforms. Therefore, we propose to solve the few-shot news recommendation problem by transferring the user-news preference from a rich source domain to a low-resource target domain. To bridge two domains in different languages without any overlapping users and news, we propose a novel unsupervised cross-lingual transfer model as the news encoder that aligns semantically similar news in two domains. A user encoder is constructed on top of the aligned news encoding and transfers the user preference from the source to the target domain. Experimental results on two real-world news recommendation datasets show the superior performance of our proposed method on addressing few-shot news recommendation, comparing to the state-of-the-art baselines.


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