Lexical substitution, i.e. generation of plausible words that can replace a particular target word in a given context, is an extremely powerful technology that can be used as a backbone of various NLP applications, including word sense induction and disambiguation, lexical relation extraction, data augmentation, etc. In this paper, we present a large-scale comparative study of lexical substitution methods employing both rather old and most recent language and masked language models (LMs and MLMs), such as context2vec, ELMo, BERT, RoBERTa, XLNet. We show that already competitive results achieved by SOTA LMs/MLMs can be further substantially improved if information about the target word is injected properly. Several existing and new target word injection methods are compared for each LM/MLM using both intrinsic evaluation on lexical substitution datasets and extrinsic evaluation on word sense induction (WSI) datasets. On two WSI datasets we obtain new SOTA results. Besides, we analyze the types of semantic relations between target words and their substitutes generated by different models or given by annotators.
Word Sense Induction (WSI) is the task of grouping of occurrences of an ambiguous word according to their meaning. In this work, we improve the approach to WSI proposed by Amrami and Goldberg (2018) based on clustering of lexical substitutes for an ambiguous word in a particular context obtained from neural language models. Namely, we propose methods for combining information from left and right context and similarity to the ambiguous word, which result in generating more accurate substitutes than the original approach. Our simple yet efficient improvement establishes a new state-of-the-art on WSI datasets for two languages. Besides, we show improvements to the original approach on a lexical substitution dataset.
We describe our solutions for semantic frame and role induction subtasks of SemEval 2019 Task 2. Our approaches got the highest scores, and the solution for the frame induction problem officially took the first place. The main contributions of this paper are related to the semantic frame induction problem. We propose a combined approach that employs two different types of vector representations: dense representations from hidden layers of a masked language model, and sparse representations based on substitutes for the target word in the context. The first one better groups synonyms, the second one is better at disambiguating homonyms. Extending the context to include nearby sentences improves the results in both cases. New Hearst-like patterns for verbs are introduced that prove to be effective for frame induction. Finally, we propose an approach to selecting the number of clusters in agglomerative clustering.