Neural methods have been shown to achieve high performance in Named Entity Recognition (NER), but rely on costly high-quality labeled data for training, which is not always available across languages. While previous works have shown that unlabeled data in a target language can be used to improve cross-lingual model performance, we propose a novel adversarial approach (AdvPicker) to better leverage such data and further improve results. We design an adversarial learning framework in which an encoder learns entity domain knowledge from labeled source-language data and better shared features are captured via adversarial training - where a discriminator selects less language-dependent target-language data via similarity to the source language. Experimental results on standard benchmark datasets well demonstrate that the proposed method benefits strongly from this data selection process and outperforms existing state-of-the-art methods; without requiring any additional external resources (e.g., gazetteers or via machine translation).
To better tackle the named entity recognition (NER) problem on languages with little/no labeled data, cross-lingual NER must effectively leverage knowledge learned from source languages with rich labeled data. Previous works on cross-lingual NER are mostly based on label projection with pairwise texts or direct model transfer. However, such methods either are not applicable if the labeled data in the source languages is unavailable, or do not leverage information contained in unlabeled data in the target language. In this paper, we propose a teacher-student learning method to address such limitations, where NER models in the source languages are used as teachers to train a student model on unlabeled data in the target language. The proposed method works for both single-source and multi-source cross-lingual NER. For the latter, we further propose a similarity measuring method to better weight the supervision from different teacher models. Extensive experiments for 3 target languages on benchmark datasets well demonstrate that our method outperforms existing state-of-the-art methods for both single-source and multi-source cross-lingual NER.