Chaoqun Duan


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MuGER2: Multi-Granularity Evidence Retrieval and Reasoning for Hybrid Question Answering
Yingyao Wang | Junwei Bao | Chaoqun Duan | Youzheng Wu | Xiaodong He | Tiejun Zhao
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Hybrid question answering (HQA) aims to answer questions over heterogeneous data, including tables and passages linked to table cells. The heterogeneous data can provide different granularity evidence to HQA models, e.t., column, row, cell, and link. Conventional HQA models usually retrieve coarse- or fine-grained evidence to reason the answer. Through comparison, we find that coarse-grained evidence is easier to retrieve but contributes less to the reasoner, while fine-grained evidence is the opposite. To preserve the advantage and eliminate the disadvantage of different granularity evidence, we propose MuGER2, a Multi-Granularity Evidence Retrieval and Reasoning approach. In evidence retrieval, a unified retriever is designed to learn the multi-granularity evidence from the heterogeneous data. In answer reasoning, an evidence selector is proposed to navigate the fine-grained evidence for the answer reader based on the learned multi-granularity evidence. Experiment results on the HybridQA dataset show that MuGER2 significantly boosts the HQA performance. Further ablation analysis verifies the effectiveness of both the retrieval and reasoning designs.

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OPERA: Operation-Pivoted Discrete Reasoning over Text
Yongwei Zhou | Junwei Bao | Chaoqun Duan | Haipeng Sun | Jiahui Liang | Yifan Wang | Jing Zhao | Youzheng Wu | Xiaodong He | Tiejun Zhao
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Machine reading comprehension (MRC) that requires discrete reasoning involving symbolic operations, e.g., addition, sorting, and counting, is a challenging task. According to this nature, semantic parsing-based methods predict interpretable but complex logical forms. However, logical form generation is nontrivial and even a little perturbation in a logical form will lead to wrong answers. To alleviate this issue, multi-predictor -based methods are proposed to directly predict different types of answers and achieve improvements. However, they ignore the utilization of symbolic operations and encounter a lack of reasoning ability and interpretability. To inherit the advantages of these two types of methods, we propose OPERA, an operation-pivoted discrete reasoning framework, where lightweight symbolic operations (compared with logical forms) as neural modules are utilized to facilitate the reasoning ability and interpretability. Specifically, operations are first selected and then softly executed to simulate the answer reasoning procedure. Extensive experiments on both DROP and RACENum datasets show the reasoning ability of OPERA. Moreover, further analysis verifies its interpretability.

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LUNA: Learning Slot-Turn Alignment for Dialogue State Tracking
Yifan Wang | Jing Zhao | Junwei Bao | Chaoqun Duan | Youzheng Wu | Xiaodong He
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Dialogue state tracking (DST) aims to predict the current dialogue state given the dialogue history. Existing methods generally exploit the utterances of all dialogue turns to assign value for each slot. This could lead to suboptimal results due to the information introduced from irrelevant utterances in the dialogue history, which may be useless and can even cause confusion. To address this problem, we propose LUNA, a SLot-TUrN Alignment enhanced approach. It first explicitly aligns each slot with its most relevant utterance, then further predicts the corresponding value based on this aligned utterance instead of all dialogue utterances. Furthermore, we design a slot ranking auxiliary task to learn the temporal correlation among slots which could facilitate the alignment. Comprehensive experiments are conducted on three multi-domain task-oriented dialogue datasets, MultiWOZ 2.0, MultiWOZ 2.1, and MultiWOZ 2.2. The results show that LUNA achieves new state-of-the-art results on these datasets.

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UniRPG: Unified Discrete Reasoning over Table and Text as Program Generation
Yongwei Zhou | Junwei Bao | Chaoqun Duan | Youzheng Wu | Xiaodong He | Tiejun Zhao
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Question answering requiring discrete reasoning, e.g., arithmetic computing, comparison, and counting, over knowledge is a challenging task. In this paper, we propose UniRPG, a semantic-parsing-based approach advanced in interpretability and scalability, to perform Unified discrete Reasoning over heterogeneous knowledge resources, i.e., table and text, as Program Generation. Concretely, UniRPG consists of a neural programmer and a symbolic program executor,where a program is the composition of a set of pre-defined general atomic and higher-order operations and arguments extracted from table and text. First, the programmer parses a question into a program by generating operations and copying arguments, and then, the executor derives answers from table and text based on the program. To alleviate the costly program annotation issue, we design a distant supervision approach for programmer learning, where pseudo programs are automatically constructed without annotated derivations. Extensive experiments on the TAT-QA dataset show that UniRPG achieves tremendous improvements and enhances interpretability and scalability compared with previous state-of-the-art methods, even without derivation annotation. Moreover, it achieves promising performance on the textual dataset DROP without derivation annotation.


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SuperAgent: A Customer Service Chatbot for E-commerce Websites
Lei Cui | Shaohan Huang | Furu Wei | Chuanqi Tan | Chaoqun Duan | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of ACL 2017, System Demonstrations


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Detection on Inconsistency of Verb Phrase in TreeBank
Chaoqun Duan | Dequan Zheng | Conghui Zhu | Sheng Li | Hongye Tan
Proceedings of the Third CIPS-SIGHAN Joint Conference on Chinese Language Processing