Transfer Learning for Resolving Sparsity Problem in Recommender systems: Human Values Approach

Abhishek Srivastava, Pradip Kumar Bala, Bipul Kumar


With the rapid rise in popularity of ecommerce application, Recommender Systems are being widely used by them to predict the response that a user will give to a given item. This prediction helps in cross selling, upselling and to increase the loyalty of their customers. However due to lack of sufficient feedback data these systems suffer from sparsity problem which leads to decline in their prediction efficiency. In this work, we have proposed and empirically demonstrated how the Transfer Learning approach using five dimensions of basic human values can be successfully used to alleviate the sparsity problem and increase the efficiency of recommender system algorithms.


Recommender systems;Collaborative Filtering;Sparsity problem;Transfer learning ; Basic Human Values

Full Text:



Badenes, H., Bengualid, M. N., Chen, J., Gou, L., Haber, E., Mahmud, J., … Zhou, M. X. (2014). System U : Automatically Deriving Personality Traits from Social Media for People Recommendation. Proceedings of the 8th ACM Conference on Recommender Systems, 373–374.

Basu, C., Hirsh, H., & Cohen, W. (1998). Recommendation as classification: Using social and content-based information in recommendation. AAAI/IAAI. Retrieved from

Berry, J., Poortinga, Y., & Pandey, J. (1997). Handbook of Cross-cultural Psychology: Basic processes and human development.

Blanco-Fernández, Y., & Pazos-Arias, J. (2008). A flexible semantic inference methodology to reason about user preferences in knowledge-based recommender systems. Knowledge-Based ….

Boudon, R. (2001). The origins of values: Essays in the Sociology and Philosophy of Beliefs. Retrieved from

Burke, R. (2002). Hybrid recommender systems: Survey and experiments. User Modeling and User-Adapted Interaction. Retrieved from

Chen, J., Hsieh, G., Mahmud, J. U., & Nichols, J. (2014). Understanding individuals’ personal values from social media word use. Proceedings of the 17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work & Social Computing - CSCW ’14, February, 405–414.

Claypool, M., Gokhale, A., & Miranda, T. (1999). Combining content-based and collaborative filters in an online newspaper. Proceedings of ACM …. Retrieved from

Das, A., Datar, M., Garg, a, & Rajaram, S. (2007). Google news personalization: scalable online collaborative filtering. Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on, 271–280.

Devos, T., Spini, D., & Schwartz, S. (2002). Conflicts among human values and trust in institutions. … Journal of Social Psychology. Retrieved from

Durkheim, E. (1893). 1964The Division of Labor in Society.

Durkheim, E. (1897). Suicide : a study in sociology. Il.: Free Press.

Durkheim, E. (1912). The elementary forms of religious life. Free Press.

Goldberg, D., Nichols, D., Oki, B. M., & Terry, D. (1992). Using collaborative filtering to weave an information tapestry. Communications of the ACM, 35(12), 61–70.

Goldberg, K., Roeder, T., Gupta, D., & Perkins, C. (2001). Eigentaste: A constant time collaborative filtering algorithm. Information Retrieval, 4(2), 133–151.

Grunert, S. C., & Juhl, H. J. (1995). Values, environmental attitudes, and buying of organic foods. Journal of Economic Psychology, 16(1), 39–62.

Hosanagar, K., & Fleder, D. (2013). Will the global village fracture into tribes? Recommender systems and their effects on consumer fragmentation. Management Science. Retrieved from

Hu, R., & Pu, P. (2011). Enhancing collaborative filtering systems with personality information. Proceedings of the Fifth ACM Conference on Recommender Systems - RecSys ’11, 197.

Inglehart, R. (1997). Modernization and postmodernization: Cultural, economic, and political change in 43 societies. Retrieved from

Kluckhohn, C. (1951). Values and value-orientations in the theory of action: An exploration in definition and classification.

Kohn, M. (1969). Class and Conformity–Homewood. Retrieved from

Kumar, B. (2016). A novel latent factor model for recommender system. JISTEM-Journal of Information Systems and Technology Management, 13(3), 497–514.

Kumar, B., Bala, P. K., & Srivastava, A. (2016). Cosine Based Latent Factor Model for Precision Oriented Recommendation. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ADVANCED COMPUTER SCIENCE AND APPLICATIONS, 7(1), 451–457.

Lops, P., De Gemmis, M., & Semeraro, G. (2011). Content-based recommender systems: State of the art and trends. In Recommender systems handbook (pp. 73–105). Springer.

McAuley, J., Pandey, R., & Leskovec, J. (2015). Inferring networks of substitutable and complementary products. Proceedings of the 21th ACM …. Retrieved from

McAuley, J., & Targett, C. (2015). Image-based recommendations on styles and substitutes. Proceedings of the 38th …. Retrieved from

McCare, R., & John, O. (1992). An introduction to the Five-Factor Model and its application. Journal of Personality.

McCrae, R., & Costa, P. (1989). Reinterpreting the Myers‐Briggs type indicator from the perspective of the five‐factor model of personality. Journal of Personality. Retrieved from

McCrae, R., & Jr, P. C. (2013). Introduction to the empirical and theoretical status of the five-factor model of personality traits. Retrieved from

Pan, S. J., & Yang, Q. (2010). A survey on transfer learning. IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, 22(10), 1345–1359.

Park, D. H., Kim, H. K., Choi, I. Y., & Kim, J. K. (2012). A literature review and classification of recommender systems research. Expert Systems with Applications.

Puohiniemi, M. (1995). Values, consumer attitudes and behaviour: An application of Schwartz’s value theory to the analysis of consumer behaviour and attitudes in two national.

Resnick, P., Iacovou, N., & Suchak, M. (1994). GroupLens: an open architecture for collaborative filtering of netnews. Proceedings of the …. Retrieved from

Rokeach, M. (1973). The nature of human values. Retrieved from

Schwartz, S. (1994). Are There Universal Aspects in the Structure and. Journal of Social Issues.

Schwartz, S. (2003). A proposal for measuring value orientations across nations. … Package of the European Social Survey.

Schwartz, S., & Huismans, S. (1995). Value priorities and religiosity in four western religions. Social Psychology Quterly. Retrieved from

Su, X., & Khoshgoftaar, T. M. (2009). A Survey of Collaborative Filtering Techniques. Advances in Artificial Intelligence, 2009(Section 3), 1–19.

Tkalčič, M., Kunaver, M., Tasič, J., & Košir, A. (2009). Personality Based User Similarity Measure for a Collaborative Recommender System. 5th Workshop on Emotion in HumanComputer InteractionReal World Challenges, 30.

Tyagi, S., & Bharadwaj, K. K. (2013). Enhancing collaborative filtering recommendations by utilizing multi-objective particle swarm optimization embedded association rule mining. Swarm and Evolutionary Computation, 13, 1–12.

Weber, M. (1958). The Protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism, trans. Talcott Parsons (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons,)


Copyright (c) 2018 Journal of Information Systems and Technology Management

Licensed under