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  1. Product retrieval systems have served as the main entry for customers to discover and purchase products online. With increasing concerns on the transparency and accountability of AI systems, studies on explainable information retrieval has received more and more attention in the research community. Interestingly, in the domain of e-commerce, despite the extensive studies on explainable product recommendation, the studies of explainable product search is still in an early stage. In this paper, we study how to construct effective explainable product search by comparing model-agnostic explanation paradigms with model-intrinsic paradigms and analyzing the important factors that determine the performance of product search explanations. We propose an explainable product search model with model-intrinsic interpretability and conduct crowdsourcing to compare it with the state-of-the-art explainable product search model with model-agnostic interpretability. We observe that both paradigms have their own advantages and the effectiveness of search explanations on different properties are affected by different factors. For example, explanation fidelity is more important for user's overall satisfaction on the system while explanation novelty may be more useful in attracting user purchases. These findings could have important implications for the future studies and design of explainable product search engines. 
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    User and item reviews are valuable for the construction of recommender systems. In general, existing review-based methods for recommendation can be broadly categorized into two groups: the siamese models that build static user and item representations from their reviews respectively, and the interaction-based models that encode user and item dynamically according to the similarity or relationships of their reviews. Although the interaction-based models have more model capacity and fit human purchasing behavior better, several problematic model designs and assumptions of the existing interaction-based models lead to its suboptimal performance compared to existing siamese models. In this paper, we identify three problems of the existing interaction-based recommendation models and propose a couple of solutions as well as a new interaction-based model to incorporate review data for rating prediction. Our model implements a relevance matching model with regularized training losses to discover user relevant information from long item reviews, and it also adapts a zero attention strategy to dynamically balance the item-dependent and item-independent information extracted from user reviews. Empirical experiments and case studies on Amazon Product Benchmark datasets show that our model can extract effective and interpretable user/item representations from their reviews and outperforms multiple types of state-of-the-art review-based recommendation models. 
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