Appel: ACL 2012 Joint Workshop on Statistical Parsing and Semantic Processing of Morphologically Rich Languages (SP-Sem-MRL 2012)

Thierry Hamon thierry.hamon at UNIV-PARIS13.FR
Tue Mar 13 19:52:47 UTC 2012

Date: Sun, 11 Mar 2012 17:53:10 +0100
From: DJamé Seddah <djame.seddah at>
Message-Id: <4121D42E-3D67-480B-893A-8A81B3C140F4 at>

** Apologies for multiple postings **

ACL 2012 Joint Workshop on Statistical Parsing and Semantic Processing
of Morphologically-Rich Languages (SP-Sem-MRL)

Endorsed by SIGLEX, SIGPARSE and the EU's PASCAL Network of Excellence

We are pleased to announce financial support in workshop registration
fees to up to five students, through the generous sponsorship of PASCAL
Network of Excellence. Priority will be given to PASCAL students, but
all students are encouraged to apply. (Details to follow closer to
beginning of registration period).  Registration Date: TBD.

Submission deadline: Mar 31, 2012
Notification to authors: Apr 21, 2012
Camera-ready deadline: Apr 30, 2012
Workshop dates: TBD, during the ACL-2012 workshop period (Jul 12-14, 2012)

Morphologically Rich Languages (MRLs) are languages in which grammatical
relations such as Subject, Predicate, Object, etc., are indicated
morphologically (e.g. through inflection) instead of positionally (as
in, e.g. English), and the position of words and phrases in the sentence
may vary substantially. The tight connection between the morphology of
words and the grammatical relations between them, and the looser
connection between the position and grouping of words to their syntactic
roles, pose serious challenges for syntactic and semantic
processing. Furthermore, since grammatical relations provide the
interface to compositional semantics, morphosyntactic phenomena may
significantly complicate processing the syntax-semantics interface. In
statistical parsing, which has been a cornerstone of research in NLP and
had seen great advances due to the widespread availability of
syntactically annotated corpora, English parsing performance has reached
a high plateau in certain genres, which is however not always indicative
of parsing performance in MRLs, dependency-based and constituency-based
alike. Semantic processing of natural language has similarly seen much
progress in recent years.  However, as in parsing, the bulk of the work
has concentrated on English, and MRLs may present processing challenges
that the community is as of yet unaware of, and which current semantic
processing technologies may have difficulty coping with. These
challenges may lurk in areas where parses may be used as input, such as
semantic role labeling, distributional semantics, paraphrasing and
textual entailment, or where inadequate pre-processing of morphological
variation hurts parsing and semantic tasks alike.

This joint workshop aims to build upon the first and second SPMRL
workshops (at NAACL-HLT 2010 and IWPT 2011, respectively) while
extending the overall scope to include semantic processing where MRLs
pose challenges for algorithms or models initially designed to process
English. In particular, we seek to explore the use of newly available
syntactically and/or semantically annotated corpora, or data sets for
semantic evaluation that can contribute to our understanding of the
difficulty that such phenomena pose. One goal of this workshop is to
encourage cross-fertilization among researchers working on different
languages and among those working on different levels of processing.  Of
particular interest is work addressing the lexical sparseness and
out-of-vocabulary issues that occur in both syntactic and semantic

The workshop will be organised around three broad themes:

- Syntactic Models: Models and architectures that explicitly integrate
  morphological analysis and parsing; Cross-language and cross-model
  comparison of strengths and weaknesses regarding particular linguistic

- Semantic Models: State-of-the-art semantic analysis and generation
  methods for MRLs, including semantic similarity and entailment
  criteria and their task-specific instantiation, and suitable
  representations for semantic tasks in MRLs.

- Joint Modeling Aspects: Improving lexical coverage and handling of
  out-of-vocabulary (OOV) words by utilising lexical knowledge or
  unsupervised/semi-supervised learning techniques; The role of parsing
  in semantic analysis for MRLs; Preprocessing issues that jointly
  affect parsing and semantic analysis; Syntax-Semantics interfaces for
  monolingual or multilingual systems.

The areas of interest for this joint workshop include, but are not
limited to, the following topics:

--Syntactic Parsing of MRLs

* parsing models and architectures that explicitly integrate
  morphological analysis and parsing

* parsing models and architectures that focus on lexical coverage and
  the handling of OOV words either by incorporating linguistic knowledge
  or through the use of unsupervised/semi-supervised learning techniques

* Cross-language and cross-model comparison of models' strengths and
  weaknesses in the face of particular linguistic phenomena (e.g.
  morphosyntactic characteristics, degree of word-order freedom)

* Comprehensive analyses of the strengths and weaknesses of various
  parsing models on particular linguistic (e.g. morphosyntactic)
  phenomena with respect to variation in tagsets, annotation schemes and
  additional data transformations

--Semantic Processing of MRLs

* Semantic distance and entailment criteria in the MRL space (e.g., with
  respect to inflection, derivation, root, pattern, lemma, tense, and/or
  aspect, etc.); possibly task-specific criteria

* Lexical resources and morphological analysis tools facilitating
  semantic distance measures and semantic relation detection

* Methods and models for semantic similarity/distance calculation,
  clustering and paraphrasing relying on MRL properties, and using:
  probability, vector/graph representation, data-driven and/or
  linguistic rules, pivoting/SMT, machine-learning, etc.

* Paraphrase and textual entailment detection or generation, specific to
  MRLs (e.g., task-specific issues of inclusion or exclusion of certain
  paraphrase and textual entailment patterns differing in inflection)

* Use of morphological analysis for semantic calculation aimed at
  reducing sparsity / OOV rate, preferably without losing information
  due to mere lemmatization

* Semantic role labeling (SRL) for MRLs; verbal/nominalized selectional

--The Syntax-Semantics Interface:

* Parsing-based semantic processing tasks, e.g., semantic role labeling

* Processing of compounds and multi-morphemic words: optimal level(s) of
  tokenization, representation, and morphological analysis for
  either/both tasks

* Syntax-aware semantic distance measures, paraphrasing and textual

* Semantic classes and/or relations as input to syntactic parsing

In addition to the standard (oral or poster) presentations in the
sessions, the SP-Sem-MRL workshop will feature a panel of commentators
for a selection of the talks, allowing for an extended discussion
period. This new feature is introduced in order to foster in-depth
discussions and to nurture interactions among researchers. It is our
hope that these interactions will help to bring ideas (and solutions) to
the fore and promote a more rapid advance of the state-of-the-art in the

Shared Task

There will be no shared task on MRLs this year. However, we will take
this opportunity to disclose, during a special session of SP-Sem-MRL,
the data sets and evaluation procedures for the cross-linguistic
cross-framework shared task which was discussed at previous SPMRL
panels, and which is planned for SPMRL 2013 at IWPT 2013. Researchers
who are interested in participating in the shared task or teams that
wish to add their data sets or extrinsic evaluation procedures to the
task are encouraged to attend the session and contribute to the


Authors are invited to submit long papers (up to 10 pages + any number
of reference pages) and short papers (up to 5 pages + any number of
reference page). Long papers should describe unpublished, substantial
and completed research. Short papers should be position papers, papers
describing work in progress or short, focused contributions.

Papers may be submitted until 31 March 2012 in PDF format via the START

Submitted papers must follow the styles and the formatting guidelines
available from the current ACL recommendations
( As the reviewing will be blind,
the papers must not include the authors' names and
affiliations. Furthermore, self-references that reveal the author's
identity, e.g., "We previously showed (Smith, 1991) ..." must be
avoided. Instead, use citations such as "Smith previously showed (Smith,
1991) ..." Papers that do not conform to these requirements will be
rejected without review. In addition, please do not post your
submissions on the web until after the review process is complete.


General chairs:
Marianna Apidianaki (LIMSI-CNRS, France)
Ido Dagan (Bar-Ilan University, Israel)
Jennifer Foster (Dublin City University, Ireland)
Yuval Marton (IBM Watson Research Center, US)
Djamé Seddah (University of Paris 4, France)
Reut Tsarfaty (Uppsala University, Sweden)

Shared session chairs:
Katrin Erk (University of Texas at Austin, US)
Ines Rehbein (University of Potsdam, Germany)
Peter Turney (National Research Council, Canada)
Yannick Versley (University of Tuebingen, Germany)

Ion Androutsopoulos (Athens University of Economics and Business, Greece)
Mohammed Attia (Dublin City University, Ireland)
Bernd Bohnet  (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
Marie Candito (University of Paris 7, France)
Aoife Cahill (Educational Testing Service, US)
Ozlem Cetinoglu (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
Jinho Choi (University of Colorado at Boulder, US)
Grzegorz Chrupala  (Saarland University, Germany)
Benoit Crabbé (University of Paris 7, France)
Gülşen Cebiroğlu Eryiğit, (Istanbul Technical University, Turkey)
Josef van Genabith (Dublin City University, Ireland)
Yoav Goldberg (Google Research NY, US)
Spence Green (Stanford University, US)
Veronique Hoste (University College Ghent, Belgium)
Samar Husain (Potsdam University, Germany)
Sandra Kübler (Indiana University, US)
Jonas Kuhn (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
Mirella Lapata (University of Edinburgh, UK)
Alberto Lavelli (FBK-irst, Italy)
Alessandro Lenci (University of Pisa, Italy)
Joseph Le Roux (Université Paris-Nord, France)
Nitin Madnani (Educational Testing Service, NJ)
Wolfgang Maier (University of Düsseldorf, Germany)
Takuya Matsuzaki (University of Tokyo, Japan)
Aurélien Max (LIMSI-CNRS, France)
Yusuke Miyao (University of Tokyo, Japan)
Preslav Nakov (Qatar Computing Research Institute, Qatar)
Roberto Navigli (Sapienza University of Rome, Italy)
Kemal Oflazer (Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar)
Sebastian Pado (University of Heidelberg, Germany)
Patrick Pantel (Microsoft Research, US)
Sameer Pradhan (BBN Technologies, US)
Idan Szpektor (Bar-Ilan University, Israel)
Kenji Sagae (University of Southern California, US)
Benoit Sagot (INRIA Rocquencourt, France)
Lamia Tounsi (Dublin City University, Ireland)
Tim Van de Cruys (University of Cambridge, UK)
Stephen Wan (CSIRO ICT Centre, Sydney)
Deniz Yuret (Koc University Istanbul, Turkey)
Zdenek Zabokrtsky (Charles University, Czech Republic)
Shiqi Zhao (Baidu Inc., China)

We are pleased to announce financial support in workshop registration
fees to up to five students, through the generous sponsorship of PASCAL
Network of Excellence. Priority will be given to PASCAL students, but
all students are encouraged to apply. (Details to follow closer to
beginning of registration period).
Registration Date: TBD.

e-mail: sp.sem.mrl2012 at

This workshop is endorsed by SIGLEX & SIGPARSE ; and sponsored by the
PASCAL Network of Excellence & the INRIA's Alpage project.

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