Academic Commons

Articles

Information Status Distinctions and Referring Expressions: An Empirical Study of References to People in News Summaries

Siddharthan, Advaith; Nenkova, Ani; McKeown, Kathleen

Although there has been much theoretical work on using various information status distinctions to explain the form of references in written text, there have been few studies that attempt to automatically learn these distinctions for generating references in the context of computer-regenerated text. In this article, we present a model for generating references to people in news summaries that incorporates insights from both theory and a corpus analysis of human written summaries. In particular, our model captures how two properties of a person referred to in the summary—familiarity to the reader and global salience in the news story—affect the content and form of the initial reference to that person in a summary. We demonstrate that these two distinctions can be learned from a typical input for multi-document summarization and that they can be used to make regeneration decisions that improve the quality of extractive summaries.

Subjects

Files

Also Published In

Title
Computational Linguistics
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1162/COLI_a_00077

More About This Work

Academic Units
Computer Science
Published Here
March 7, 2012
Academic Commons provides global access to research and scholarship produced at Columbia University, Barnard College, Teachers College, Union Theological Seminary and Jewish Theological Seminary. Academic Commons is managed by the Columbia University Libraries.