Siddique Latif(University of Southern Queensland Australia), Rajib Rana(University of Southern Queensland), Sara Khalifa(Distributed Sensing Systems Group, Data61, CSIRO Australia), Raja Jurdak(Queensland University of Technology (QUT)) and Björn Schuller(University of Augsburg / Imperial College London)
Speech emotion recognition systems (SER) can achieve high accuracy when the training and test data are identically distributed, but this assumption is frequently violated in practice and the performance of SER systems plummet against unforeseen data shifts. The design of robust models for accurate SER is challenging, which limits its use in practical applications. In this paper we propose a deeper neural network architecture wherein we fuse Dense Convolutional Network (DenseNet), Long short-term memory (LSTM) and Highway Network to learn powerful discriminative features which are robust to noise. We also propose data augmentation with our network architecture to further improve the robustness. We comprehensively evaluate the architecture coupled with data augmentation against (1) noise, (2) adversarial attacks and (3) cross-corpus settings. Our evaluations on the widely used IEMOCAP and MSP-IMPROV datasets show promising results when compared with existing studies and state-of-the-art models.