Qing Liu


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Few-shot Named Entity Recognition with Self-describing Networks
Jiawei Chen | Qing Liu | Hongyu Lin | Xianpei Han | Le Sun
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Few-shot NER needs to effectively capture information from limited instances and transfer useful knowledge from external resources. In this paper, we propose a self-describing mechanism for few-shot NER, which can effectively leverage illustrative instances and precisely transfer knowledge from external resources by describing both entity types and mentions using a universal concept set. Specifically, we design Self-describing Networks (SDNet), a Seq2Seq generation model which can universally describe mentions using concepts, automatically map novel entity types to concepts, and adaptively recognize entities on-demand. We pre-train SDNet with large-scale corpus, and conduct experiments on 8 benchmarks from different domains. Experiments show that SDNet achieves competitive performances on all benchmarks and achieves the new state-of-the-art on 6 benchmarks, which demonstrates its effectiveness and robustness.

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Unified Structure Generation for Universal Information Extraction
Yaojie Lu | Qing Liu | Dai Dai | Xinyan Xiao | Hongyu Lin | Xianpei Han | Le Sun | Hua Wu
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Information extraction suffers from its varying targets, heterogeneous structures, and demand-specific schemas. In this paper, we propose a unified text-to-structure generation framework, namely UIE, which can universally model different IE tasks, adaptively generate targeted structures, and collaboratively learn general IE abilities from different knowledge sources. Specifically, UIE uniformly encodes different extraction structures via a structured extraction language, adaptively generates target extractions via a schema-based prompt mechanism – structural schema instructor, and captures the common IE abilities via a large-scale pretrained text-to-structure model. Experiments show that UIE achieved the state-of-the-art performance on 4 IE tasks, 13 datasets, and on all supervised, low-resource, and few-shot settings for a wide range of entity, relation, event and sentiment extraction tasks and their unification. These results verified the effectiveness, universality, and transferability of UIE.


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Alexa Conversations: An Extensible Data-driven Approach for Building Task-oriented Dialogue Systems
Anish Acharya | Suranjit Adhikari | Sanchit Agarwal | Vincent Auvray | Nehal Belgamwar | Arijit Biswas | Shubhra Chandra | Tagyoung Chung | Maryam Fazel-Zarandi | Raefer Gabriel | Shuyang Gao | Rahul Goel | Dilek Hakkani-Tur | Jan Jezabek | Abhay Jha | Jiun-Yu Kao | Prakash Krishnan | Peter Ku | Anuj Goyal | Chien-Wei Lin | Qing Liu | Arindam Mandal | Angeliki Metallinou | Vishal Naik | Yi Pan | Shachi Paul | Vittorio Perera | Abhishek Sethi | Minmin Shen | Nikko Strom | Eddie Wang
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies: Demonstrations

Traditional goal-oriented dialogue systems rely on various components such as natural language understanding, dialogue state tracking, policy learning and response generation. Training each component requires annotations which are hard to obtain for every new domain, limiting scalability of such systems. Similarly, rule-based dialogue systems require extensive writing and maintenance of rules and do not scale either. End-to-End dialogue systems, on the other hand, do not require module-specific annotations but need a large amount of data for training. To overcome these problems, in this demo, we present Alexa Conversations, a new approach for building goal-oriented dialogue systems that is scalable, extensible as well as data efficient. The components of this system are trained in a data-driven manner, but instead of collecting annotated conversations for training, we generate them using a novel dialogue simulator based on a few seed dialogues and specifications of APIs and entities provided by the developer. Our approach provides out-of-the-box support for natural conversational phenomenon like entity sharing across turns or users changing their mind during conversation without requiring developers to provide any such dialogue flows. We exemplify our approach using a simple pizza ordering task and showcase its value in reducing the developer burden for creating a robust experience. Finally, we evaluate our system using a typical movie ticket booking task integrated with live APIs and show that the dialogue simulator is an essential component of the system that leads to over 50% improvement in turn-level action signature prediction accuracy.

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Fine-grained Entity Typing via Label Reasoning
Qing Liu | Hongyu Lin | Xinyan Xiao | Xianpei Han | Le Sun | Hua Wu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Conventional entity typing approaches are based on independent classification paradigms, which make them difficult to recognize inter-dependent, long-tailed and fine-grained entity types. In this paper, we argue that the implicitly entailed extrinsic and intrinsic dependencies between labels can provide critical knowledge to tackle the above challenges. To this end, we propose Label Reasoning Network(LRN), which sequentially reasons fine-grained entity labels by discovering and exploiting label dependencies knowledge entailed in the data. Specifically, LRN utilizes an auto-regressive network to conduct deductive reasoning and a bipartite attribute graph to conduct inductive reasoning between labels, which can effectively model, learn and reason complex label dependencies in a sequence-to-set, end-to-end manner. Experiments show that LRN achieves the state-of-the-art performance on standard ultra fine-grained entity typing benchmarks, and can also resolve the long tail label problem effectively.