27 June, 2023
Christian Becker-Asano


Effects of gender neutralization on the anthropomorphism of voices

We are happy to share that our Master student Johanna Magdalena Kuch got her recent work on the effects of gender neutralization on the anthropomorphism of voices accepted at the IEEE RO-MAN conference. The paper will be presented in Busan Korea, 28th-31th August 2023.


This study examines the impact of gender neutralization on the anthropomorphism of speech signals and is motivated by the need to find a computer-generated voice for our android robot Andrea. A filter was used to gender-neutralize recordings from a database of natural and synthetic voices, which were then pre-tested for gender neutrality. The results of the main experiment showed that gender-neutral voices were less anthropomorphic than gender-specific voices, with the naturalness of the voice having a greater impact than gender neutralization itself. Synthetic voices were rated less anthropomorphic than natural voices, and the additional effect of gender neutralization was stronger for natural voices. Overall, anthropomorphism ranked highest for natural gender-specific voices, followed by natural gender-neutralized voices, synthetic gender-specific, and, finally, synthetic gender-neutralized voices. Gender of the participants had no significant impact. These findings have implications for the development of humanoid and social as well as android robots.

Authors: Johanna Magdalena Kuch, Frank Melchior, Christian Becker-Asano

Paper: https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/10309479