(Apologies for multiples postings)
Last Call for Papers
3rd Workshop on Extra-Propositional Aspects of Meaning in Computational
Colocated with COLING 2016
Osaka, December 12, 2016
***Students travel grants sponsored by NSF available***
***With a Special Session on Negation***
During the last decade, semantic representation of text has focused on
extracting propositional meaning, i.e., capturing who does what to whom,
when and where. Several corpora are available, and existing tools
extract this kind of knowledge, e.g., role labelers trained on PropBank
or NomBank. But propositional semantic representations disregard
significant meaning encoded in human language. For example, while
sentences (1-2) below share the same propositional meaning regarding
verb carry, they do not convey the same overall meaning. In order to
truly capture what these sentences mean, extra-propositional aspects of
meaning (ExProM) such as uncertainty, negation and attribution must be
taken into account.
1. Thomas Eric Duncan likely contracted the disease when he carried a
pregnant woman sick with Ebola.
2. Thomas Eric personally told me that he never carried a pregnant
woman with Ebola.
Resources to express Extra-Propositional Aspects of Meaning (ExProM) are
pervasive in human language and, while studied from a theoretical
perspective, computational models are still scarce. Humans use language
to describe events that do not correlate with a real situation in the
world. They express desires, intentions and plans, and also discuss
events that did not happen or are unlikely to happen. Events are often
described hypothetically, and speculation can be used to explain why
something is a certain way without a strong commitment. Humans do not
always (want to) tell the (whole) truth: they may use deception to hide
lies. Devices such as irony and sarcasm are employed to play with words
so that what is said is not what is meant. Finally, humans not only
describe their personal views or experiences, but also attribute
statements to others. These phenomena are not exclusive of opinionated
texts. They are ubiquitous in language, including scientific works and
news as exemplified below:
1. A better team might have prevented this infection.
2. Some speculate that this was a failure of the internal
3. Infected people typically don't become contagious until they
4. Medical personnel can be infected if they don't use protective
gear, such as surgical masks and gloves.
5. You cannot get it from another person until they start showing
symptoms of the disease, like fever.
6. You can only catch Ebola from coming into direct contact with the
bodily fluids of someone who has the disease and is showing symptoms.
7. There is no reason to believe that Ebola virus is any different
from any of the viruses that infect humans and have not changed the way
that they are spread.
The workshop is organised around two main sessions: a paper presentation
session and a special session on negation.
Regular Paper Presentation Session
In its 2016 edition, the ExProM workshop aims at bringing together
scientists working on ExProM within computational linguistics. The goal
is to attract researchers interested in theoretical frameworks,
annotation schemas, modeling and implementing real systems, as well as
analyzing the impact of ExProM in NLP applications. The workshop also
aims at building a bridge between theoretical and computational
linguistics. In particular, it will address these topics, although it
will also cover related ones:
- Negation: verbal/non-verbal, analytic/synthetic, clausal/subclausal
and ordinary/metalinguistic; scope and focus
- Modality: defining and annotating types for computational linguistics
- Factuality: determining factuality changes within and across documents
- Veridicity and veridicality: measuring author commitment
- Attribution and perspectives: determining whose perspective is being
- Irony and sarcasm
- Knowledge transfer from linguistics to computational linguistics:
defining models for ExProM
- ExProM and lexical resources
- ExProM at the sentence and discourse level: how much context is necessary?
- ExProM across domains: news, scientific texts, legal documents,
- ExProM in user-generated content
- ExProM and implicit meaning: what do sentences really mean?
- ExProM in spoken language
- (Automatically) extracting ExProM: strategies, resources and difficulties
- Supervised, unsupervised and rule-based approaches to extract ExProM
- Integrating ExProM in the NLP pipeline
- ExProM for NLP applications: does it help?
Special Session on Negation
Besides the presentation of long papers about novel research on the
aforementioned topics, the workshop will also include a Special Session
on Negation, during which participants will discuss existing and new
approaches to annotating and processing negation, and what is needed in
order to make NLP applications perform satisfactorily with negated
The goals of the special session are the following:
- To establish the key aspects of negation that need to be addressed in
order to improve the performance of NLP applications.
- To work towards a standard for annotating and processing negation in
order to fulfil the needs of the NLP community.
- To foster an international collaboration network.
The Special Session will be a hands-on and discussion session. We
solicit two types of papers, that will be the basis for the discussion
(i) Position papers from researchers working on negation per se, as well
as on NLP applications that need to be sensitive to this level of
information, such as machine translation, textual entailment, opinion
mining, biomedical information extraction, summarization or language
generation. Ideally, these short papers should be written from the
perspective of a specific NLP application. As for the content, they
should describe the negation phenomena that hinder the application
performance, with examples that can be used in a discussion session
aimed at finding solutions.
(ii) Position papers where an annotation task related to negation is
defined. The paper should describe an (original) annotation task and
motivate why it is useful. Ideally, authors should report on a pilot
annotation experiment where the task has been tested. The pilot
experiment can be done on a few samples of text.
The papers of the Special Session will not be presented in a traditional
session, but their content will be discussed. In order to guarantee a
productive working session, workshop participants will be provided one
month before the conference with all papers accepted for the Special
Session, as well as with the annotation samples reported in these papers
and a list of discussion items. The organisers will lead a discussion
based on this content.
For the annotation task, participants can use their own datasets or the
samples of text provided by the organisers. Samples from different
genres and domains will be provided: news reports, opinionated texts,
image captions, and biomedical abstracts. Participants who do not use
the samples provided by the organisers will be asked to release the
annotation sample so that the other participants can prepare for the
As a result of the Special Session, the organisers will invite
interested participants to participate in a collaboration network
enabling further development of the concepts and conclusions resulting
from the discussion.
Some annotation tasks that can be addressed are the following:
- Focus of negation
- Implicit positive meanings of negated statements
- Negation in modelling perspectives
- Categories of negated statements that are meaningful for NLP applications
- Affixal negation
- Indirect negation
- Lexical negation
- Quantifiers and negation
- Paraphrasing negated propositions
For the Regular Paper Presentation Session authors are invited to submit
papers describing original, unpublished work in the topic areas listed
above. Full papers should not exceed eight pages. Additionally, authors
are invited to submit short papers not exceeding 4 pages. Short papers
usually describe: a small, focused contribution; work in progress; a
negative result; an opinion piece; or an interesting application nugget.
For the Special Session on Negation authors are invited to submit papers
from 4 to 8 pages. Authors should include in the papers links to any
(annotation) material the paper is based on, if is it different from the
material provided by the organisers.
All papers can have up to 2 pages of references. All papers will be peer
reviewed and all accepted papers will be published in the workshop
proceedings. Authors need to follow the style guidelines of the main
conference, which are to be found at
Student Travel Grants
Funding is available to assist students both with travel to Osaka, Japan
and workshop expenses (hotel, transportation to and from the airport,
registration fee, reasonable meal costs, etc.). Funding is limited, and
student travel grants are intended to partially cover the expenses of
student participants in the workshop.
- Current student from the United States or a developing country
- Author or coauthor of an accepted paper in the workshop
Deails about the application process will be announced soon in the
September 25 Submission deadline
October 16 Author notification
October 30 Camera ready due by Authors
Cosmin Adrian Bejan - Vanderbilt University
Emily M. Bender - University of Washington
Tommaso Caselli - VU University Amsterdam
Marie-Catherine de Marneffe - The Ohio State University
Jacob Eisenstein - Georgia Tech
Iris Hendrickx - Radboud University
Lori Levin - Carnegie Mellon University
Erwin Marsi - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Malvina Nissim - University of Groningen
Christopher Potts - Stanford University
Sampo Pyysalo - NaCTeM
German Rigau - UPV/EHU
Ellen Riloff - University of Utah
Paolo Rosso - Universidad Politècnica de Valencia
Caroline Sporleder - Georg-Augus-Universität Göttingen
Erik Velldal - University of Oslo
Byron C. Wallace - University of Texas Austin
Bonnie Webber - University of Edinburgh
Eduardo Blanco - University of North Texas
Roser Morante - VU Amsterdam
Roser Saurí - Oxford University Press
Contact details are available at the workshop website.
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