Plan4Dial: A Dialogue Planning Framework


Dialogue agents have exploded in importance in recent years as businesses increasingly use chat-bots to serve their customer base. However, many of these dialogue systems rely on black-box language models that cannot be verified for predictability, making them a liability. One proposed solution is dialogue planning, which uses planning to generate a complete dialogue tree and allows for the verification of the agent’s actions. Despite the plethora of existing research in this space, there is no open and readily available modern framework for dialogue planning development. We propose Plan4Dial, an open-source system for creating dialogue planning chat-bots. Plan4Dial allows developers to declare complex chat-bots with ease by writing an intuitive YAML specification which the system converts to raw PDDL. Plan4Dial then calls a state-of-the-art planner to generate a dialogue tree which we execute with an extension of IBM’s dialogue plan executor, Hovor. We also created WIDGET, an embeddable web user interface for users to chat with their agents. Our work allows for the simple creation of complex but verifiable goal-oriented dialogue agents using planning technology.

International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling: System Demonstrations