Proceedings of the Thirteenth Workshop on Graph-Based Methods for Natural Language Processing (TextGraphs-13)

Dmitry Ustalov, Swapna Somasundaran, Peter Jansen, Goran Glavaš, Martin Riedl, Mihai Surdeanu, Michalis Vazirgiannis (Editors)

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Hong Kong
EMNLP | TextGraphs | WS
Association for Computational Linguistics
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Proceedings of the Thirteenth Workshop on Graph-Based Methods for Natural Language Processing (TextGraphs-13)
Dmitry Ustalov | Swapna Somasundaran | Peter Jansen | Goran Glavaš | Martin Riedl | Mihai Surdeanu | Michalis Vazirgiannis

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Transfer in Deep Reinforcement Learning Using Knowledge Graphs
Prithviraj Ammanabrolu | Mark Riedl

Text adventure games, in which players must make sense of the world through text descriptions and declare actions through text descriptions, provide a stepping stone toward grounding action in language. Prior work has demonstrated that using a knowledge graph as a state representation and question-answering to pre-train a deep Q-network facilitates faster control policy learning. In this paper, we explore the use of knowledge graphs as a representation for domain knowledge transfer for training text-adventure playing reinforcement learning agents. Our methods are tested across multiple computer generated and human authored games, varying in domain and complexity, and demonstrate that our transfer learning methods let us learn a higher-quality control policy faster.

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Relation Prediction for Unseen-Entities Using Entity-Word Graphs
Yuki Tagawa | Motoki Taniguchi | Yasuhide Miura | Tomoki Taniguchi | Tomoko Ohkuma | Takayuki Yamamoto | Keiichi Nemoto

Knowledge graphs (KGs) are generally used for various NLP tasks. However, as KGs still miss some information, it is necessary to develop Knowledge Graph Completion (KGC) methods. Most KGC researches do not focus on the Out-of-KGs entities (Unseen-entities), we need a method that can predict the relation for the entity pairs containing Unseen-entities to automatically add new entities to the KGs. In this study, we focus on relation prediction and propose a method to learn entity representations via a graph structure that uses Seen-entities, Unseen-entities and words as nodes created from the descriptions of all entities. In the experiments, our method shows a significant improvement in the relation prediction for the entity pairs containing Unseen-entities.

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Scalable graph-based method for individual named entity identification
Sammy Khalife | Michalis Vazirgiannis

In this paper, we consider the named entity linking (NEL) problem. We assume a set of queries, named entities, that have to be identified within a knowledge base. This knowledge base is represented by a text database paired with a semantic graph, endowed with a classification of entities (ontology). We present state-of-the-art methods in NEL, and propose a new method for individual identification requiring few annotated data samples. We demonstrate its scalability and performance over standard datasets, for several ontology configurations. Our approach is well-motivated for integration in real systems. Indeed, recent deep learning methods, despite their capacity to improve experimental precision, require lots of parameter tuning along with large volume of annotated data.

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Neural Speech Translation using Lattice Transformations and Graph Networks
Daniel Beck | Trevor Cohn | Gholamreza Haffari

Speech translation systems usually follow a pipeline approach, using word lattices as an intermediate representation. However, previous work assume access to the original transcriptions used to train the ASR system, which can limit applicability in real scenarios. In this work we propose an approach for speech translation through lattice transformations and neural models based on graph networks. Experimental results show that our approach reaches competitive performance without relying on transcriptions, while also being orders of magnitude faster than previous work.

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Using Graphs for Word Embedding with Enhanced Semantic Relations
Matan Zuckerman | Mark Last

Word embedding algorithms have become a common tool in the field of natural language processing. While some, like Word2Vec, are based on sequential text input, others are utilizing a graph representation of text. In this paper, we introduce a new algorithm, named WordGraph2Vec, or in short WG2V, which combines the two approaches to gain the benefits of both. The algorithm uses a directed word graph to provide additional information for sequential text input algorithms. Our experiments on benchmark datasets show that text classification algorithms are nearly as accurate with WG2V as with other word embedding models while preserving more stable accuracy rankings.

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Identifying Supporting Facts for Multi-hop Question Answering with Document Graph Networks
Mokanarangan Thayaparan | Marco Valentino | Viktor Schlegel | André Freitas

Recent advances in reading comprehension have resulted in models that surpass human performance when the answer is contained in a single, continuous passage of text. However, complex Question Answering (QA) typically requires multi-hop reasoning - i.e. the integration of supporting facts from different sources, to infer the correct answer. This paper proposes Document Graph Network (DGN), a message passing architecture for the identification of supporting facts over a graph-structured representation of text. The evaluation on HotpotQA shows that DGN obtains competitive results when compared to a reading comprehension baseline operating on raw text, confirming the relevance of structured representations for supporting multi-hop reasoning.

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Essentia: Mining Domain-specific Paraphrases with Word-Alignment Graphs
Danni Ma | Chen Chen | Behzad Golshan | Wang-Chiew Tan

Paraphrases are important linguistic resources for a wide variety of NLP applications. Many techniques for automatic paraphrase mining from general corpora have been proposed. While these techniques are successful at discovering generic paraphrases, they often fail to identify domain-specific paraphrases (e.g., staff, concierge in the hospitality domain). This is because current techniques are often based on statistical methods, while domain-specific corpora are too small to fit statistical methods. In this paper, we present an unsupervised graph-based technique to mine paraphrases from a small set of sentences that roughly share the same topic or intent. Our system, Essentia, relies on word-alignment techniques to create a word-alignment graph that merges and organizes tokens from input sentences. The resulting graph is then used to generate candidate paraphrases. We demonstrate that our system obtains high quality paraphrases, as evaluated by crowd workers. We further show that the majority of the identified paraphrases are domain-specific and thus complement existing paraphrase databases.

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Layerwise Relevance Visualization in Convolutional Text Graph Classifiers
Robert Schwarzenberg | Marc Hübner | David Harbecke | Christoph Alt | Leonhard Hennig

Representations in the hidden layers of Deep Neural Networks (DNN) are often hard to interpret since it is difficult to project them into an interpretable domain. Graph Convolutional Networks (GCN) allow this projection, but existing explainability methods do not exploit this fact, i.e. do not focus their explanations on intermediate states. In this work, we present a novel method that traces and visualizes features that contribute to a classification decision in the visible and hidden layers of a GCN. Our method exposes hidden cross-layer dynamics in the input graph structure. We experimentally demonstrate that it yields meaningful layerwise explanations for a GCN sentence classifier.

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TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task on Multi-Hop Inference for Explanation Regeneration
Peter Jansen | Dmitry Ustalov

While automated question answering systems are increasingly able to retrieve answers to natural language questions, their ability to generate detailed human-readable explanations for their answers is still quite limited. The Shared Task on Multi-Hop Inference for Explanation Regeneration tasks participants with regenerating detailed gold explanations for standardized elementary science exam questions by selecting facts from a knowledge base of semi-structured tables. Each explanation contains between 1 and 16 interconnected facts that form an “explanation graph” spanning core scientific knowledge and detailed world knowledge. It is expected that successfully combining these facts to generate detailed explanations will require advancing methods in multi-hop inference and information combination, and will make use of the supervised training data provided by the WorldTree explanation corpus. The top-performing system achieved a mean average precision (MAP) of 0.56, substantially advancing the state-of-the-art over a baseline information retrieval model. Detailed extended analyses of all submitted systems showed large relative improvements in accessing the most challenging multi-hop inference problems, while absolute performance remains low, highlighting the difficulty of generating detailed explanations through multi-hop reasoning.

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ASU at TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task: Explanation ReGeneration using Language Models and Iterative Re-Ranking
Pratyay Banerjee

In this work we describe the system from Natural Language Processing group at Arizona State University for the TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task. The task focuses on Explanation Regeneration, an intermediate step towards general multi-hop inference on large graphs. Our approach consists of modeling the explanation regeneration task as a learning to rank problem, for which we use state-of-the-art language models and explore dataset preparation techniques. We utilize an iterative reranking based approach to further improve the rankings. Our system secured 2nd rank in the task with a mean average precision (MAP) of 41.3% on the test set.

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Red Dragon AI at TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task: Language Model Assisted Explanation Generation
Yew Ken Chia | Sam Witteveen | Martin Andrews

The TextGraphs-13 Shared Task on Explanation Regeneration (Jansen and Ustalov, 2019) asked participants to develop methods to reconstruct gold explanations for elementary science questions. Red Dragon AI’s entries used the language of the questions and explanation text directly, rather than a constructing a separate graph-like representation. Our leaderboard submission placed us 3rd in the competition, but we present here three methods of increasing sophistication, each of which scored successively higher on the test set after the competition close.

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Team SVMrank: Leveraging Feature-rich Support Vector Machines for Ranking Explanations to Elementary Science Questions
Jennifer D’Souza | Isaiah Onando Mulang’ | Sören Auer

The TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task on Multi-Hop Inference for Explanation Regeneration (MIER-19) tackles explanation generation for answers to elementary science questions. It builds on the AI2 Reasoning Challenge 2018 (ARC-18) which was organized as an advanced question answering task on a dataset of elementary science questions. The ARC-18 questions were shown to be hard to answer with systems focusing on surface-level cues alone, instead requiring far more powerful knowledge and reasoning. To address MIER-19, we adopt a hybrid pipelined architecture comprising a featurerich learning-to-rank (LTR) machine learning model, followed by a rule-based system for reranking the LTR model predictions. Our system was ranked fourth in the official evaluation, scoring close to the second and third ranked teams, achieving 39.4% MAP.

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Chains-of-Reasoning at TextGraphs 2019 Shared Task: Reasoning over Chains of Facts for Explainable Multi-hop Inference
Rajarshi Das | Ameya Godbole | Manzil Zaheer | Shehzaad Dhuliawala | Andrew McCallum

This paper describes our submission to the shared task on “Multi-hop Inference Explanation Regeneration” in TextGraphs workshop at EMNLP 2019 (Jansen and Ustalov, 2019). Our system identifies chains of facts relevant to explain an answer to an elementary science examination question. To counter the problem of ‘spurious chains’ leading to ‘semantic drifts’, we train a ranker that uses contextualized representation of facts to score its relevance for explaining an answer to a question. Our system was ranked first w.r.t the mean average precision (MAP) metric outperforming the second best system by 14.95 points.

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Joint Semantic and Distributional Word Representations with Multi-Graph Embeddings
Pierre Daix-Moreux | Matthias Gallé

Word embeddings continue to be of great use for NLP researchers and practitioners due to their training speed and easiness of use and distribution. Prior work has shown that the representation of those words can be improved by the use of semantic knowledge-bases. In this paper we propose a novel way of combining those knowledge-bases while the lexical information of co-occurrences of words remains. It is conceptually clear, as it consists in mapping both distributional and semantic information into a multi-graph and modifying existing node embeddings techniques to compute word representations. Our experiments show improved results compared to vanilla word embeddings, retrofitting and concatenation techniques using the same information, on a variety of data-sets of word similarities.

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Evaluating Research Novelty Detection: Counterfactual Approaches
Reinald Kim Amplayo | Seung-won Hwang | Min Song

In this paper, we explore strategies to evaluate models for the task research paper novelty detection: Given all papers released at a given date, which of the papers discuss new ideas and influence future research? We find the novelty is not a singular concept, and thus inherently lacks of ground truth annotations with cross-annotator agreement, which is a major obstacle in evaluating these models. Test-of-time award is closest to such annotation, which can only be made retrospectively and is extremely scarce. We thus propose to compare and evaluate models using counterfactual simulations. First, we ask models if they can differentiate papers at time t and counterfactual paper from future time t+d. Second, we ask models if they can predict test-of-time award at t+d. These are proxies that can be agreed by human annotators and easily augmented by correlated signals, using which evaluation can be done through four tasks: classification, ranking, correlation and feature selection. We show these proxy evaluation methods complement each other regarding error handling, coverage, interpretability, and scope, and thus altogether contribute to the observation of the relative strength of existing models.

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Do Sentence Interactions Matter? Leveraging Sentence Level Representations for Fake News Classification
Vaibhav Vaibhav | Raghuram Mandyam | Eduard Hovy

The rising growth of fake news and misleading information through online media outlets demands an automatic method for detecting such news articles. Of the few limited works which differentiate between trusted vs other types of news article (satire, propaganda, hoax), none of them model sentence interactions within a document. We observe an interesting pattern in the way sentences interact with each other across different kind of news articles. To capture this kind of information for long news articles, we propose a graph neural network-based model which does away with the need of feature engineering for fine grained fake news classification. Through experiments, we show that our proposed method beats strong neural baselines and achieves state-of-the-art accuracy on existing datasets. Moreover, we establish the generalizability of our model by evaluating its performance in out-of-domain scenarios. Code is available at

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Faceted Hierarchy: A New Graph Type to Organize Scientific Concepts and a Construction Method
Qingkai Zeng | Mengxia Yu | Wenhao Yu | JinJun Xiong | Yiyu Shi | Meng Jiang

On a scientific concept hierarchy, a parent concept may have a few attributes, each of which has multiple values being a group of child concepts. We call these attributes facets: classification has a few facets such as application (e.g., face recognition), model (e.g., svm, knn), and metric (e.g., precision). In this work, we aim at building faceted concept hierarchies from scientific literature. Hierarchy construction methods heavily rely on hypernym detection, however, the faceted relations are parent-to-child links but the hypernym relation is a multi-hop, i.e., ancestor-to-descendent link with a specific facet “type-of”. We use information extraction techniques to find synonyms, sibling concepts, and ancestor-descendent relations from a data science corpus. And we propose a hierarchy growth algorithm to infer the parent-child links from the three types of relationships. It resolves conflicts by maintaining the acyclic structure of a hierarchy.

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Graph-Based Semi-Supervised Learning for Natural Language Understanding
Zimeng Qiu | Eunah Cho | Xiaochun Ma | William Campbell

Semi-supervised learning is an efficient method to augment training data automatically from unlabeled data. Development of many natural language understanding (NLU) applications has a challenge where unlabeled data is relatively abundant while labeled data is rather limited. In this work, we propose transductive graph-based semi-supervised learning models as well as their inductive variants for NLU. We evaluate the approach’s applicability using publicly available NLU data and models. In order to find similar utterances and construct a graph, we use a paraphrase detection model. Results show that applying the inductive graph-based semi-supervised learning can improve the error rate of the NLU model by 5%.

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Graph Enhanced Cross-Domain Text-to-SQL Generation
Siyu Huo | Tengfei Ma | Jie Chen | Maria Chang | Lingfei Wu | Michael Witbrock

Semantic parsing is a fundamental problem in natural language understanding, as it involves the mapping of natural language to structured forms such as executable queries or logic-like knowledge representations. Existing deep learning approaches for semantic parsing have shown promise on a variety of benchmark data sets, particularly on text-to-SQL parsing. However, most text-to-SQL parsers do not generalize to unseen data sets in different domains. In this paper, we propose a new cross-domain learning scheme to perform text-to-SQL translation and demonstrate its use on Spider, a large-scale cross-domain text-to-SQL data set. We improve upon a state-of-the-art Spider model, SyntaxSQLNet, by constructing a graph of column names for all databases and using graph neural networks to compute their embeddings. The resulting embeddings offer better cross-domain representations and SQL queries, as evidenced by substantial improvement on the Spider data set compared to SyntaxSQLNet.

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Reasoning Over Paths via Knowledge Base Completion
Saatviga Sudhahar | Andrea Pierleoni | Ian Roberts

Reasoning over paths in large scale knowledge graphs is an important problem for many applications. In this paper we discuss a simple approach to automatically build and rank paths between a source and target entity pair with learned embeddings using a knowledge base completion model (KBC). We assembled a knowledge graph by mining the available biomedical scientific literature and extracted a set of high frequency paths to use for validation. We demonstrate that our method is able to effectively rank a list of known paths between a pair of entities and also come up with plausible paths that are not present in the knowledge graph. For a given entity pair we are able to reconstruct the highest ranking path 60% of the time within the top 10 ranked paths and achieve 49% mean average precision. Our approach is compositional since any KBC model that can produce vector representations of entities can be used.

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Node Embeddings for Graph Merging: Case of Knowledge Graph Construction
Ida Szubert | Mark Steedman

Combining two graphs requires merging the nodes which are counterparts of each other. In this process errors occur, resulting in incorrect merging or incorrect failure to merge. We find a high prevalence of such errors when using AskNET, an algorithm for building Knowledge Graphs from text corpora. AskNET node matching method uses string similarity, which we propose to replace with vector embedding similarity. We explore graph-based and word-based embedding models and show an overall error reduction of from 56% to 23.6%, with a reduction of over a half in both types of incorrect node matching.

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DBee: A Database for Creating and Managing Knowledge Graphs and Embeddings
Viktor Schlegel | André Freitas

This paper describes DBee, a database to support the construction of data-intensive AI applications. DBee provides a unique data model which operates jointly over large-scale knowledge graphs (KGs) and embedding vector spaces (VSs). This model supports queries which exploit the semantic properties of both types of representations (KGs and VSs). Additionally, DBee aims to facilitate the construction of KGs and VSs, by providing a library of generators, which can be used to create, integrate and transform data into KGs and VSs.

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A Constituency Parsing Tree based Method for Relation Extraction from Abstracts of Scholarly Publications
Ming Jiang | Jana Diesner

We present a simple, rule-based method for extracting entity networks from the abstracts of scientific literature. By taking advantage of selected syntactic features of constituent parsing trees, our method automatically extracts and constructs graphs in which nodes represent text-based entities (in this case, noun phrases) and their relationships (in this case, verb phrases or preposition phrases). We use two benchmark datasets for evaluation and compare with previously presented results for these data. Our evaluation results show that the proposed method leads to accuracy rates that are comparable to or exceed the results achieved with state-of-the-art, learning-based methods in several cases.