Conf: ACL-2001 Workshop on Natural Language Generation DEADLINE EXTENSION

alexis nasr alexis.nasr at
Mon Apr 9 15:09:05 UTC 2001

                 Extended submission deadline: **22 April**

                            ACL/EACL 2001 Workshop


                               6-7 July 2001
                              Toulouse, France


                     Sponsored by IBM, Endorsed by SIGGEN

Natural language generation (NLG) constitutes the production of meaningful
texts in natural languages from some underlying non-linguistic
representation of information. Accomplishing this goal may be envisioned
for a number of different purposes, including standardized and/or
multi-lingual reports, summaries, machine translation, dialog applications,
and embedding in multi-media and hypertext environments. Consequently, the
automated production of language is associated with a large number of
highly diverse tasks whose appropriate orchestration in high quality poses
a variety of theoretical and practical problems. Relevant issues include
content selection, text organization, the production of referring
expressions, aggregation, lexicalization, and surface realization, as well
as coordination with other media.

This workshop is part of a bi-annual series of workshops about natural
language generation that runs since 1987. Previous European workshops have
been held at Royaumont, Edinburgh, Judenstein, Pisa, Leiden, Duisburg, and
Toulouse. The goal of the workshop is to be an informal meeting which
facilitates the dissemination of knowledge and expertise in the field. The
workshop will focus on the following topics:

   * Search methods for NLG (in content planning and realization)

     There seems to be a substantial discrepancy between
     application-oriented systems and principled approaches to NLG.
     Accomodating a standard pipeline architecture with suitable heuristic
     preferences to the intended functionality of a system stands in
     contrast to several principled approaches to searching which have been
     tried out so far. These include blackboard architectures, constraint
     propagation and, more recently genetic algorithms and statistical
     techniques. A comparison of these methods in terms of their potential
     and limitations is likely to improve understanding about this issue.
     Gained insights could prove fruitful for building applications in a
     more general and, thus, better reusable way, especially in large-scale
     applications such as summarization and machine translation.

   * Differences in information organization between source and
     presentation specifications (and methods to bridge between these)

     Whether the generation task is to verbally express contents of some
     knowledge base or to produce multi-lingual presentations from
     language-neutral or similar representations, there are strong
     similarities in building the target representations: In the
     overwhelming number of cases, the ordering and embedding of elements
     in the source representation is reflected by the ordering and
     embedding of their corresponding realizations at the surface. Often,
     this reflection is systematic, many times even simple. But a few cases
     prove complex and involve a major restructuring of the surface
     structure when compared to the source structure. A major emphasis of
     this topic is on collecting such complex cases, identifying
     commonalities between them and discussing restructuring techniques.

Accepted papers on these and related topics will be scheduled for
The majority of the time will be devoted to discussions, either in sequence
in parallel, depending on the number of participants. We are considering
organizing a panel. For the focus topics above, we will contact a number of
competent researchers to address the topic from a specific perspective
according to their experience. In addition, we will ask some of them to
prepare material / concrete examples for discussions.


          Helmut Horacek    Univ. of the Saarland
          Nicolas Nicolov   IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
          Leo Wanner        Univ. of Stuttgart


          John Bateman      Univ. of Bremen
          Dan Cristea       Univ. of Iasi
          Robert Dale       Macquarie University
          Laurence Danlos   Universite Paris 7
          Marc Dymetman     Xerox Research Centre Europe, Grenoble
          Michael Elhadad   Ben-Gurion Univ.
          Kristiina Jokinen Univ. of Art and Design Helsinki
          Richard Kittredge Univ. of Montreal & CoGenTex
          Daniel Marcu      ISI, Univ. of Southern California
          Chris Mellish     Univ. of Edinburgh
          Sergei Nirenburg  CRL, New Mexico
          Owen Rambow       AT&T Research
          Ehud Reiter       Univ. of Aberdeen
          Manfred Stede     Technical University of Berlin
          Michael Zock      LIMSI, CNRS

SUBMISSIONS (papers, posters, demos)

Papers describing original work in the area of NLG in particular related to
the workshop focus topics above should be submitted electronically. Papers
should be 6-8 pages long in PDF format. We recommend a A4, two-column
format like the ACL proceedings:

We also invite poster and demo submissions (free format, up to 6 page,

The submissions should be associated with a cover email containing the
following information (ASCII text):

          # TITLE:    <title of the paper>
          # AUTHORS:  <list of authors>
          # EMAIL:    <email of author(s) for correspondence>
          # KEYWORDS: <keywords, topic sub-areas, ...>
          # TYPE:     <paper> / <poster> / <demo>
          # ABSTRACT: <abstract of the paper>

Send your submission to Helmut Horacek <horacek at>.


          Paper submissions           *** 22 April 2001 ***
          Notification of acceptance  6 May 2001
          Camera-ready copies due     16 May 2001
          Registration deadline       as ACL
          Workshop dates              6-7 July 2001


The registration fee for the workshop will be posted at a later stage. The
registration fee includes attendance of the workshop and a copy of workshop
proceedings. Follow the registration instructions at the ACL site and
indicate that you would like to attend the NLG workshop.

People wishing to attend the workshop but not submitting papers should send
a notification of attendance: a 1-2 page stating interest to participate,
work done in NLG so far, and potential contributions / material for
discussions about one of the topics. This informationn will help with the
organisation of discussions and allow for an informal and highly
interactive character of the workshop. Notifications of attendance should
be sent to Leo Wanner <wannerlo at>.


          Check the following web site for updates about the NLG workshop:

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