Tianyu Liu


2023

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Enhancing Continual Relation Extraction via Classifier Decomposition
Heming Xia | Peiyi Wang | Tianyu Liu | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2023

Continual relation extraction (CRE) models aim at handling emerging new relations while avoiding catastrophically forgetting old ones in the streaming data. Though improvements have been shown by previous CRE studies, most of them only adopt a vanilla strategy when models first learn representations of new relations. In this work, we point out that there exist two typical biases after training of this vanilla strategy: classifier bias and representation bias, which causes the previous knowledge that the model learned to be shaded. To alleviate those biases, we propose a simple yet effective classifier decomposition framework that splits the last FFN layer into separated previous and current classifiers, so as to maintain previous knowledge and encourage the model to learn more robust representations at this training stage. Experimental results on two standard benchmarks show that our proposed framework consistently outperforms the state-of-the-art CRE models, which indicates that the importance of the first training stage to CRE models may be underestimated. Our code will be released upon acceptance.

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ImageNetVC: Zero- and Few-Shot Visual Commonsense Evaluation on 1000 ImageNet Categories
Heming Xia | Qingxiu Dong | Lei Li | Jingjing Xu | Tianyu Liu | Ziwei Qin | Zhifang Sui
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023

Recently, Large Language Models (LLMs) have been serving as general-purpose interfaces, posing a significant demand for comprehensive visual knowledge. However, it remains unclear how well current LLMs and their visually augmented counterparts (VaLMs) can master visual commonsense knowledge. To investigate this, we propose ImageNetVC, a human-annotated dataset specifically designed for zero- and few-shot visual commonsense evaluation across 1,000 ImageNet categories. Utilizing ImageNetVC, we benchmark the fundamental visual commonsense knowledge of both unimodal LLMs and VaLMs. Furthermore, we analyze the factors affecting the visual commonsense knowledge of large-scale models, providing insights into the development of language models enriched with visual commonsense knowledge. Our code and dataset are available at https://github.com/hemingkx/ImageNetVC.

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Bi-Drop: Enhancing Fine-tuning Generalization via Synchronous sub-net Estimation and Optimization
Shoujie Tong | Heming Xia | Damai Dai | Runxin Xu | Tianyu Liu | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023

Pretrained language models have achieved remarkable success in natural language understanding. However, fine-tuning pretrained models on limited training data tends to overfit and thus diminish performance. This paper presents Bi-Drop, a fine-tuning strategy that selectively updates model parameters using gradients from various sub-nets dynamically generated by dropout. The sub-net estimation of Bi-Drop is performed in an in-batch manner, so it overcomes the problem of hysteresis in sub-net updating, which is possessed by previous methods that perform asynchronous sub-net estimation. Also, Bi-Drop needs only one mini-batch to estimate the sub-net so it achieves higher utility of training data. Experiments on the GLUE benchmark demonstrate that Bi-Drop consistently outperforms previous fine-tuning methods. Furthermore, empirical results also show that Bi-Drop exhibits excellent generalization ability and robustness for domain transfer, data imbalance, and low-resource scenarios.

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DialogQAE: N-to-N Question Answer Pair Extraction from Customer Service Chatlog
Xin Zheng | Tianyu Liu | Haoran Meng | Xu Wang | Yufan Jiang | Mengliang Rao | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023

Harvesting question-answer (QA) pairs from customer service chatlog in the wild is an efficient way to enrich the knowledge base for customer service chatbots in the cold start or continuous integration scenarios. Prior work attempts to obtain 1-to-1 QA pairs from growing customer service chatlog, which fails to integrate the incomplete utterances from the dialog context for composite QA retrieval. In this paper, we propose N-to-N QA extraction task in which the derived questions and corresponding answers might be separated across different utterances. We introduce a suite of generative/discriminative tagging based methods with end-to-end and two-stage variants that perform well on 5 customer service datasets and for the first time setup a benchmark for N-to-N DialogQAE with utterance and session level evaluation metrics. With a deep dive into extracted QA pairs, we find that the relations between and inside the QA pairs can be indicators to analyze the dialogue structure, e.g. information seeking, clarification, barge-in and elaboration. We also show that the proposed models can adapt to different domains and languages, and reduce the labor cost of knowledge accumulation in the real-world product dialogue platform.

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InfoCL: Alleviating Catastrophic Forgetting in Continual Text Classification from An Information Theoretic Perspective
Yifan Song | Peiyi Wang | Weimin Xiong | Dawei Zhu | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui | Sujian Li
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023

Continual learning (CL) aims to constantly learn new knowledge over time while avoiding catastrophic forgetting on old tasks. We focus on continual text classification under the class-incremental setting. Recent CL studies have identified the severe performance decrease on analogous classes as a key factor for catastrophic forgetting. In this paper, through an in-depth exploration of the representation learning process in CL, we discover that the compression effect of the information bottleneck leads to confusion on analogous classes. To enable the model learn more sufficient representations, we propose a novel replay-based continual text classification method, InfoCL. Our approach utilizes fast-slow and current-past contrastive learning to perform mutual information maximization and better recover the previously learned representations. In addition, InfoCL incorporates an adversarial memory augmentation strategy to alleviate the overfitting problem of replay. Experimental results demonstrate that InfoCL effectively mitigates forgetting and achieves state-of-the-art performance on three text classification tasks.

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Linear-Time Modeling of Linguistic Structure: An Order-Theoretic Perspective
Tianyu Liu | Afra Amini | Mrinmaya Sachan | Ryan Cotterell
Proceedings of the 2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Tasks that model the relation between pairs of tokens in a string are a vital part of understanding natural language. Such tasks, in general, require exhaustive pair-wise comparisons of tokens, thus having a quadratic runtime complexity in the length of the string. We show that these exhaustive comparisons can be avoided, and, moreover, the complexity of such tasks can be reduced to linear by casting the relation between tokens as a partial order over the string. Our method predicts real numbers for each token in a string in parallel and sorts the tokens accordingly, resulting in total orders of the tokens in the string. Each total order implies a set of arcs oriented from smaller to greater tokens, sorted by their predicted numbers. The intersection of total orders results in a partial order over the set of tokens in the string, which is then decoded into a directed graph representing the desired linguistic structure. Our experiments on dependency parsing and coreference resolution show that our method achieves state-of-the-art or comparable performance. Moreover, the linear complexity and parallelism of our method double the speed of graph-based coreference resolution models, and bring a 10-times speed-up over graph-based dependency parsers.

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Denoising Bottleneck with Mutual Information Maximization for Video Multimodal Fusion
Shaoxiang Wu | Damai Dai | Ziwei Qin | Tianyu Liu | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Video multimodal fusion aims to integrate multimodal signals in videos, such as visual, audio and text, to make a complementary prediction with multiple modalities contents. However, unlike other image-text multimodal tasks, video has longer multimodal sequences with more redundancy and noise in both visual and audio modalities. Prior denoising methods like forget gate are coarse in the granularity of noise filtering. They often suppress the redundant and noisy information at the risk of losing critical information. Therefore, we propose a denoising bottleneck fusion (DBF) model for fine-grained video multimodal fusion. On the one hand, we employ a bottleneck mechanism to filter out noise and redundancy with a restrained receptive field. On the other hand, we use a mutual information maximization module to regulate the filter-out module to preserve key information within different modalities. Our DBF model achieves significant improvement over current state-of-the-art baselines on multiple benchmarks covering multimodal sentiment analysis and multimodal summarization tasks. It proves that our model can effectively capture salient features from noisy and redundant video, audio, and text inputs. The code for this paper will be publicly available at https://github.com/WSXRHFG/DBF

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Discourse-Centric Evaluation of Document-level Machine Translation with a New Densely Annotated Parallel Corpus of Novels
Yuchen Eleanor Jiang | Tianyu Liu | Shuming Ma | Dongdong Zhang | Mrinmaya Sachan | Ryan Cotterell
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Several recent papers claim to have achieved human parity at sentence-level machine translation (MT)—especially between high-resource language pairs. In response, the MT community has, in part, shifted its focus to document-level translation. Translating documents requires a deeper understanding of the structure and meaning of text, which is often captured by various kinds of discourse phenomena such as consistency, coherence, and cohesion. However, this renders conventional sentence-level MT evaluation benchmarks inadequate for evaluating the performance of context-aware MT systems. This paperpresents a new dataset with rich discourse annotations, built upon the large-scale parallel corpus BWB introduced in Jiang et al. (2022a). The new BWB annotation introduces four extra evaluation aspects, i.e., entity, terminology, coreference, and quotation, covering 15,095 entity mentions in both languages. Using these annotations, we systematically investigate the similarities and differences between the discourse structures of source and target languages, and the challenges they pose to MT. We discover that MT outputs differ fundamentally from human translations in terms of their latent discourse structures. This gives us a new perspective on the challenges and opportunities in document-level MT. We make our resource publicly available to spur future research in document-level MT and its generalization to other language translation tasks.

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Hexatagging: Projective Dependency Parsing as Tagging
Afra Amini | Tianyu Liu | Ryan Cotterell
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

We introduce a novel dependency parser, the hexatagger, that constructs dependency trees by tagging the words in a sentence with elements from a finite set of possible tags. In contrast to many approaches to dependency parsing, our approach is fully parallelizable at training time, i.e., the structure-building actions needed to build a dependency parse can be predicted in parallel to each other. Additionally, exact decoding is linear in time and space complexity. Furthermore, we derive a probabilistic dependency parser that predicts hexatags using no more than a linear model with features from a pretrained language model, i.e., we forsake a bespoke architecture explicitly designed for the task. Despite the generality and simplicity of our approach, we achieve state-of-the-art performance of 96.4 LAS and 97.4 UAS on the Penn Treebank test set. Additionally, our parser’s linear time complexity and parallelism significantly improve computational efficiency, with a roughly 10-times speed-up over previous state-of-the-art models during decoding.

2022

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Premise-based Multimodal Reasoning: Conditional Inference on Joint Textual and Visual Clues
Qingxiu Dong | Ziwei Qin | Heming Xia | Tian Feng | Shoujie Tong | Haoran Meng | Lin Xu | Zhongyu Wei | Weidong Zhan | Baobao Chang | Sujian Li | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

It is a common practice for recent works in vision language cross-modal reasoning to adopt a binary or multi-choice classification formulation taking as input a set of source image(s) and textual query. In this work, we take a sober look at such an “unconditional” formulation in the sense that no prior knowledge is specified with respect to the source image(s). Inspired by the designs of both visual commonsense reasoning and natural language inference tasks, we propose a new task termed “Premise-based Multi-modal Reasoning” (PMR) where a textual premise is the background presumption on each source image. The PMR dataset contains 15,360 manually annotated samples which are created by a multi-phase crowd-sourcing process. With selected high-quality movie screenshots and human-curated premise templates from 6 pre-defined categories, we ask crowd-source workers to write one true hypothesis and three distractors (4 choices) given the premise and image through a cross-check procedure.

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A Token-level Reference-free Hallucination Detection Benchmark for Free-form Text Generation
Tianyu Liu | Yizhe Zhang | Chris Brockett | Yi Mao | Zhifang Sui | Weizhu Chen | Bill Dolan
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Large pretrained generative models like GPT-3 often suffer from hallucinating non-existent or incorrect content, which undermines their potential merits in real applications. Existing work usually attempts to detect these hallucinations based on a corresponding oracle reference at a sentence or document level. However ground-truth references may not be readily available for many free-form text generation applications, and sentence- or document-level detection may fail to provide the fine-grained signals that would prevent fallacious content in real time. As a first step to addressing these issues, we propose a novel token-level, reference-free hallucination detection task and an associated annotated dataset named HaDeS (HAllucination DEtection dataSet). To create this dataset, we first perturb a large number of text segments extracted from English language Wikipedia, and then verify these with crowd-sourced annotations. To mitigate label imbalance during annotation, we utilize an iterative model-in-loop strategy. We conduct comprehensive data analyses and create multiple baseline models.

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Hierarchical Curriculum Learning for AMR Parsing
Peiyi Wang | Liang Chen | Tianyu Liu | Damai Dai | Yunbo Cao | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Abstract Meaning Representation (AMR) parsing aims to translate sentences to semantic representation with a hierarchical structure, and is recently empowered by pretrained sequence-to-sequence models. However, there exists a gap between their flat training objective (i.e., equally treats all output tokens) and the hierarchical AMR structure, which limits the model generalization. To bridge this gap, we propose a Hierarchical Curriculum Learning (HCL) framework with Structure-level (SC) and Instance-level Curricula (IC). SC switches progressively from core to detail AMR semantic elements while IC transits from structure-simple to -complex AMR instances during training. Through these two warming-up processes, HCL reduces the difficulty of learning complex structures, thus the flat model can better adapt to the AMR hierarchy. Extensive experiments on AMR2.0, AMR3.0, structure-complex and out-of-distribution situations verify the effectiveness of HCL.

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ATP: AMRize Then Parse! Enhancing AMR Parsing with PseudoAMRs
Liang Chen | Peiyi Wang | Runxin Xu | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui | Baobao Chang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: NAACL 2022

As Abstract Meaning Representation (AMR) implicitly involves compound semantic annotations, we hypothesize auxiliary tasks which are semantically or formally related can better enhance AMR parsing. We find that 1) Semantic role labeling (SRL) and dependency parsing (DP), would bring more performance gain than other tasks e.g. MT and summarization in the text-to-AMR transition even with much less data. 2) To make a better fit for AMR, data from auxiliary tasks should be properly “AMRized” to PseudoAMR before training. Knowledge from shallow level parsing tasks can be better transferred to AMR Parsing with structure transform. 3) Intermediate-task learning is a better paradigm to introduce auxiliary tasks to AMR parsing, compared to multitask learning. From an empirical perspective, we propose a principled method to involve auxiliary tasks to boost AMR parsing. Extensive experiments show that our method achieves new state-of-the-art performance on different benchmarks especially in topology-related scores. Code and models are released at https://github.com/PKUnlp-icler/ATP.

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Autoregressive Structured Prediction with Language Models
Tianyu Liu | Yuchen Eleanor Jiang | Nicholas Monath | Ryan Cotterell | Mrinmaya Sachan
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Recent years have seen a paradigm shift in NLP towards using pretrained language models (PLM) for a wide range of tasks. However, there are many difficult design decisions to represent structures (e.g. tagged text, coreference chains) in a way such that they can be captured by PLMs. Prior work on structured prediction with PLMs typically flattens the structured output into a sequence, which limits the quality of structural information being learned and leads to inferior performance compared to classic discriminative models. In this work, we describe an approach to model structures as sequences of actions in an autoregressive manner with PLMs, allowing in-structure dependencies to be learned without any loss. Our approach achieves the new state-of-the-art on all the structured prediction tasks we looked at, namely, named entity recognition, end-to-end relation extraction, and coreference resolution.

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DialogUSR: Complex Dialogue Utterance Splitting and Reformulation for Multiple Intent Detection
Haoran Meng | Zheng Xin | Tianyu Liu | Zizhen Wang | He Feng | Binghuai Lin | Xuemin Zhao | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

While interacting with chatbots, users may elicit multiple intents in a single dialogue utterance. Instead of training a dedicated multi-intent detection model, we propose DialogUSR, a dialogue utterance splitting and reformulation task that first splits multi-intent user query into several single-intent sub-queries and then recovers all the coreferred and omitted information in the sub-queries. DialogUSR can serve as a plug-in and domain-agnostic module that empowers the multi-intent detection for the deployed chatbots with minimal efforts. We collect a high-quality naturally occurring dataset that covers 23 domains with a multi-step crowd-souring procedure. To benchmark the proposed dataset, we propose multiple action-based generative models that involve end-to-end and two-stage training, and conduct in-depth analyses on the pros and cons of the proposed baselines.

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Learning Invariant Representation Improves Robustness for MRC Models
Yu Hai | Liang Wen | Haoran Meng | Tianyu Liu | Houfeng Wang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

The prosperity of Pretrained Language Models(PLM) has greatly promoted the development of Machine Reading Comprehension (MRC). However, these models are vulnerable and not robust to adversarial examples. In this paper, we propose Stable and Contrastive Question Answering (SCQA) to improve invariance of representation to alleviate these robustness issues. Specifically, we first construct positive example pairs which have same answer through data augmentation. Then SCQA learns enhanced representations with better alignment between positive pairs by introducing stability and contrastive loss. Experimental results show that our approach can boost the robustness of QA models cross different MRC tasks and attack sets significantly and consistently.

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BlonDe: An Automatic Evaluation Metric for Document-level Machine Translation
Yuchen Jiang | Tianyu Liu | Shuming Ma | Dongdong Zhang | Jian Yang | Haoyang Huang | Rico Sennrich | Ryan Cotterell | Mrinmaya Sachan | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Standard automatic metrics, e.g. BLEU, are not reliable for document-level MT evaluation. They can neither distinguish document-level improvements in translation quality from sentence-level ones, nor identify the discourse phenomena that cause context-agnostic translations. This paper introduces a novel automatic metric BlonDe to widen the scope of automatic MT evaluation from sentence to document level. BlonDe takes discourse coherence into consideration by categorizing discourse-related spans and calculating the similarity-based F1 measure of categorized spans. We conduct extensive comparisons on a newly constructed dataset BWB. The experimental results show that BlonDe possesses better selectivity and interpretability at the document-level, and is more sensitive to document-level nuances. In a large-scale human study, BlonDe also achieves significantly higher Pearson’s r correlation with human judgments compared to previous metrics.

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A Structured Span Selector
Tianyu Liu | Yuchen Jiang | Ryan Cotterell | Mrinmaya Sachan
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Many natural language processing tasks, e.g., coreference resolution and semantic role labeling, require selecting text spans and making decisions about them. A typical approach to such tasks is to score all possible spans and greedily select spans for task-specific downstream processing. This approach, however, does not incorporate any inductive bias about what sort of spans ought to be selected, e.g., that selected spans tend to be syntactic constituents. In this paper, we propose a novel grammar-based structured span selection model which learns to make use of the partial span-level annotation provided for such problems. Compared to previous approaches, our approach gets rid of the heuristic greedy span selection scheme, allowing us to model the downstream task on an optimal set of spans. We evaluate our model on two popular span prediction tasks: coreference resolution and semantic role labeling; and show improvements on both.

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An Enhanced Span-based Decomposition Method for Few-Shot Sequence Labeling
Peiyi Wang | Runxin Xu | Tianyu Liu | Qingyu Zhou | Yunbo Cao | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Few-Shot Sequence Labeling (FSSL) is a canonical paradigm for the tagging models, e.g., named entity recognition and slot filling, to generalize on an emerging, resource-scarce domain. Recently, the metric-based meta-learning framework has been recognized as a promising approach for FSSL. However, most prior works assign a label to each token based on the token-level similarities, which ignores the integrality of named entities or slots. To this end, in this paper, we propose ESD, an Enhanced Span-based Decomposition method for FSSL. ESD formulates FSSL as a span-level matching problem between test query and supporting instances. Specifically, ESD decomposes the span matching problem into a series of span-level procedures, mainly including enhanced span representation, class prototype aggregation and span conflicts resolution. Extensive experiments show that ESD achieves the new state-of-the-art results on two popular FSSL benchmarks, FewNERD and SNIPS, and is proven to be more robust in the noisy and nested tagging scenarios.

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A Two-Stream AMR-enhanced Model for Document-level Event Argument Extraction
Runxin Xu | Peiyi Wang | Tianyu Liu | Shuang Zeng | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Most previous studies aim at extracting events from a single sentence, while document-level event extraction still remains under-explored. In this paper, we focus on extracting event arguments from an entire document, which mainly faces two critical problems: a) the long-distance dependency between trigger and arguments over sentences; b) the distracting context towards an event in the document. To address these issues, we propose a Two-Stream Abstract meaning Representation enhanced extraction model (TSAR). TSAR encodes the document from different perspectives by a two-stream encoding module, to utilize local and global information and lower the impact of distracting context. Besides, TSAR introduces an AMR-guided interaction module to capture both intra-sentential and inter-sentential features, based on the locally and globally constructed AMR semantic graphs. An auxiliary boundary loss is introduced to enhance the boundary information for text spans explicitly. Extensive experiments illustrate that TSAR outperforms previous state-of-the-art by a large margin, with 2.54 F1 and 5.13 F1 performance gain on the public RAMS and WikiEvents datasets respectively, showing the superiority in the cross-sentence arguments extraction. We release our code in https://github.com/PKUnlp-icler/TSAR.

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HPT: Hierarchy-aware Prompt Tuning for Hierarchical Text Classification
Zihan Wang | Peiyi Wang | Tianyu Liu | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Zhifang Sui | Houfeng Wang
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Hierarchical text classification (HTC) is a challenging subtask of multi-label classification due to its complex label hierarchy. Recently, the pretrained language models (PLM)have been widely adopted in HTC through a fine-tuning paradigm. However, in this paradigm, there exists a huge gap between the classification tasks with sophisticated label hierarchy and the masked language model (MLM) pretraining tasks of PLMs and thus the potential of PLMs cannot be fully tapped. To bridge the gap, in this paper, we propose HPT, a Hierarchy-aware Prompt Tuning method to handle HTC from a multi-label MLM perspective. Specifically, we construct a dynamic virtual template and label words that take the form of soft prompts to fuse the label hierarchy knowledge and introduce a zero-bounded multi-label cross-entropy loss to harmonize the objectives of HTC and MLM.Extensive experiments show HPT achieves state-of-the-art performances on 3 popular HTC datasets and is adept at handling the imbalance and low resource situations. Our code is available at https://github.com/wzh9969/HPT.

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Learning Robust Representations for Continual Relation Extraction via Adversarial Class Augmentation
Peiyi Wang | Yifan Song | Tianyu Liu | Binghuai Lin | Yunbo Cao | Sujian Li | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Continual relation extraction (CRE) aims to continually learn new relations from a class-incremental data stream. CRE model usually suffers from catastrophic forgetting problem, i.e., the performance of old relations seriously degrades when the model learns new relations. Most previous work attributes catastrophic forgetting to the corruption of the learned representations as new relations come, with an implicit assumption that the CRE models have adequately learned the old relations. In this paper, through empirical studies we argue that this assumption may not hold, and an important reason for catastrophic forgetting is that the learned representations do not have good robustness against the appearance of analogous relations in the subsequent learning process. To address this issue, we encourage the model to learn more precise and robust representations through a simple yet effective adversarial class augmentation mechanism (ACA), which is easy to implement and model-agnostic. Experimental results show that ACA can consistently improve the performance of state-of-the-art CRE models on two popular benchmarks.

2021

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Decompose, Fuse and Generate: A Formation-Informed Method for Chinese Definition Generation
Hua Zheng | Damai Dai | Lei Li | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui | Baobao Chang | Yang Liu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

In this paper, we tackle the task of Definition Generation (DG) in Chinese, which aims at automatically generating a definition for a word. Most existing methods take the source word as an indecomposable semantic unit. However, in parataxis languages like Chinese, word meanings can be composed using the word formation process, where a word (“桃花”, peach-blossom) is formed by formation components (“桃”, peach; “花”, flower) using a formation rule (Modifier-Head). Inspired by this process, we propose to enhance DG with word formation features. We build a formation-informed dataset, and propose a model DeFT, which Decomposes words into formation features, dynamically Fuses different features through a gating mechanism, and generaTes word definitions. Experimental results show that our method is both effective and robust.

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Inductively Representing Out-of-Knowledge-Graph Entities by Optimal Estimation Under Translational Assumptions
Damai Dai | Hua Zheng | Fuli Luo | Pengcheng Yang | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui | Baobao Chang
Proceedings of the 6th Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP (RepL4NLP-2021)

Conventional Knowledge Graph Completion (KGC) assumes that all test entities appear during training. However, in real-world scenarios, Knowledge Graphs (KG) evolve fast with out-of-knowledge-graph (OOKG) entities added frequently, and we need to efficiently represent these entities. Most existing Knowledge Graph Embedding (KGE) methods cannot represent OOKG entities without costly retraining on the whole KG. To enhance efficiency, we propose a simple and effective method that inductively represents OOKG entities by their optimal estimation under translational assumptions. Moreover, given pretrained embeddings of the in-knowledge-graph (IKG) entities, our method even needs no additional learning. Experimental results on two KGC tasks with OOKG entities show that our method outperforms the previous methods by a large margin with higher efficiency.

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Leveraging Word-Formation Knowledge for Chinese Word Sense Disambiguation
Hua Zheng | Lei Li | Damai Dai | Deli Chen | Tianyu Liu | Xu Sun | Yang Liu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

In parataxis languages like Chinese, word meanings are constructed using specific word-formations, which can help to disambiguate word senses. However, such knowledge is rarely explored in previous word sense disambiguation (WSD) methods. In this paper, we propose to leverage word-formation knowledge to enhance Chinese WSD. We first construct a large-scale Chinese lexical sample WSD dataset with word-formations. Then, we propose a model FormBERT to explicitly incorporate word-formations into sense disambiguation. To further enhance generalizability, we design a word-formation predictor module in case word-formation annotations are unavailable. Experimental results show that our method brings substantial performance improvement over strong baselines.

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Document-level Event Extraction via Heterogeneous Graph-based Interaction Model with a Tracker
Runxin Xu | Tianyu Liu | Lei Li | Baobao Chang
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Document-level event extraction aims to recognize event information from a whole piece of article. Existing methods are not effective due to two challenges of this task: a) the target event arguments are scattered across sentences; b) the correlation among events in a document is non-trivial to model. In this paper, we propose Heterogeneous Graph-based Interaction Model with a Tracker (GIT) to solve the aforementioned two challenges. For the first challenge, GIT constructs a heterogeneous graph interaction network to capture global interactions among different sentences and entity mentions. For the second, GIT introduces a Tracker module to track the extracted events and hence capture the interdependency among the events. Experiments on a large-scale dataset (Zheng et al, 2019) show GIT outperforms the previous methods by 2.8 F1. Further analysis reveals is effective in extracting multiple correlated events and event arguments that scatter across the document.

2020

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HypoNLI: Exploring the Artificial Patterns of Hypothesis-only Bias in Natural Language Inference
Tianyu Liu | Zheng Xin | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the Twelfth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

Many recent studies have shown that for models trained on datasets for natural language inference (NLI), it is possible to make correct predictions by merely looking at the hypothesis while completely ignoring the premise. In this work, we manage to derive adversarial examples in terms of the hypothesis-only bias and explore eligible ways to mitigate such bias. Specifically, we extract various phrases from the hypotheses (artificial patterns) in the training sets, and show that they have been strong indicators to the specific labels. We then figure out ‘hard’ and ‘easy’ instances from the original test sets whose labels are opposite to or consistent with those indications. We also set up baselines including both pretrained models (BERT, RoBerta, XLNet) and competitive non-pretrained models (InferSent, DAM, ESIM). Apart from the benchmark and baselines, we also investigate two debiasing approaches which exploit the artificial pattern modeling to mitigate such hypothesis-only bias: down-sampling and adversarial training. We believe those methods can be treated as competitive baselines in NLI debiasing tasks.

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An Empirical Study on Model-agnostic Debiasing Strategies for Robust Natural Language Inference
Tianyu Liu | Zheng Xin | Xiaoan Ding | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 24th Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning

The prior work on natural language inference (NLI) debiasing mainly targets at one or few known biases while not necessarily making the models more robust. In this paper, we focus on the model-agnostic debiasing strategies and explore how to (or is it possible to) make the NLI models robust to multiple distinct adversarial attacks while keeping or even strengthening the models’ generalization power. We firstly benchmark prevailing neural NLI models including pretrained ones on various adversarial datasets. We then try to combat distinct known biases by modifying a mixture of experts (MoE) ensemble method and show that it’s nontrivial to mitigate multiple NLI biases at the same time, and that model-level ensemble method outperforms MoE ensemble method. We also perform data augmentation including text swap, word substitution and paraphrase and prove its efficiency in combating various (though not all) adversarial attacks at the same time. Finally, we investigate several methods to merge heterogeneous training data (1.35M) and perform model ensembling, which are straightforward but effective to strengthen NLI models.

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An Anchor-Based Automatic Evaluation Metric for Document Summarization
Kexiang Wang | Tianyu Liu | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

The widespread adoption of reference-based automatic evaluation metrics such as ROUGE has promoted the development of document summarization. In this paper, we consider a new protocol for designing reference-based metrics that require the endorsement of source document(s). Following protocol, we propose an anchored ROUGE metric fixing each summary particle on source document, which bases the computation on more solid ground. Empirical results on benchmark datasets validate that source document helps to induce a higher correlation with human judgments for ROUGE metric. Being self-explanatory and easy-to-implement, the protocol can naturally foster various effective designs of reference-based metrics besides the anchored ROUGE introduced here.

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An Exploration of Arbitrary-Order Sequence Labeling via Energy-Based Inference Networks
Lifu Tu | Tianyu Liu | Kevin Gimpel
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Many tasks in natural language processing involve predicting structured outputs, e.g., sequence labeling, semantic role labeling, parsing, and machine translation. Researchers are increasingly applying deep representation learning to these problems, but the structured component of these approaches is usually quite simplistic. In this work, we propose several high-order energy terms to capture complex dependencies among labels in sequence labeling, including several that consider the entire label sequence. We use neural parameterizations for these energy terms, drawing from convolutional, recurrent, and self-attention networks. We use the framework of learning energy-based inference networks (Tu and Gimpel, 2018) for dealing with the difficulties of training and inference with such models. We empirically demonstrate that this approach achieves substantial improvement using a variety of high-order energy terms on four sequence labeling tasks, while having the same decoding speed as simple, local classifiers. We also find high-order energies to help in noisy data conditions.

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Discriminatively-Tuned Generative Classifiers for Robust Natural Language Inference
Xiaoan Ding | Tianyu Liu | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui | Kevin Gimpel
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

While discriminative neural network classifiers are generally preferred, recent work has shown advantages of generative classifiers in term of data efficiency and robustness. In this paper, we focus on natural language inference (NLI). We propose GenNLI, a generative classifier for NLI tasks, and empirically characterize its performance by comparing it to five baselines, including discriminative models and large-scale pretrained language representation models like BERT. We explore training objectives for discriminative fine-tuning of our generative classifiers, showing improvements over log loss fine-tuning from prior work (Lewis and Fan, 2019). In particular, we find strong results with a simple unbounded modification to log loss, which we call the “infinilog loss”. Our experiments show that GenNLI outperforms both discriminative and pretrained baselines across several challenging NLI experimental settings, including small training sets, imbalanced label distributions, and label noise.

2019

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Enhancing Topic-to-Essay Generation with External Commonsense Knowledge
Pengcheng Yang | Lei Li | Fuli Luo | Tianyu Liu | Xu Sun
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Automatic topic-to-essay generation is a challenging task since it requires generating novel, diverse, and topic-consistent paragraph-level text with a set of topics as input. Previous work tends to perform essay generation based solely on the given topics while ignoring massive commonsense knowledge. However, this commonsense knowledge provides additional background information, which can help to generate essays that are more novel and diverse. Towards filling this gap, we propose to integrate commonsense from the external knowledge base into the generator through dynamic memory mechanism. Besides, the adversarial training based on a multi-label discriminator is employed to further improve topic-consistency. We also develop a series of automatic evaluation metrics to comprehensively assess the quality of the generated essay. Experiments show that with external commonsense knowledge and adversarial training, the generated essays are more novel, diverse, and topic-consistent than existing methods in terms of both automatic and human evaluation.

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Key Fact as Pivot: A Two-Stage Model for Low Resource Table-to-Text Generation
Shuming Ma | Pengcheng Yang | Tianyu Liu | Peng Li | Jie Zhou | Xu Sun
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Table-to-text generation aims to translate the structured data into the unstructured text. Most existing methods adopt the encoder-decoder framework to learn the transformation, which requires large-scale training samples. However, the lack of large parallel data is a major practical problem for many domains. In this work, we consider the scenario of low resource table-to-text generation, where only limited parallel data is available. We propose a novel model to separate the generation into two stages: key fact prediction and surface realization. It first predicts the key facts from the tables, and then generates the text with the key facts. The training of key fact prediction needs much fewer annotated data, while surface realization can be trained with pseudo parallel corpus. We evaluate our model on a biography generation dataset. Our model can achieve 27.34 BLEU score with only 1,000 parallel data, while the baseline model only obtain the performance of 9.71 BLEU score.

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MAAM: A Morphology-Aware Alignment Model for Unsupervised Bilingual Lexicon Induction
Pengcheng Yang | Fuli Luo | Peng Chen | Tianyu Liu | Xu Sun
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

The task of unsupervised bilingual lexicon induction (UBLI) aims to induce word translations from monolingual corpora in two languages. Previous work has shown that morphological variation is an intractable challenge for the UBLI task, where the induced translation in failure case is usually morphologically related to the correct translation. To tackle this challenge, we propose a morphology-aware alignment model for the UBLI task. The proposed model aims to alleviate the adverse effect of morphological variation by introducing grammatical information learned by the pre-trained denoising language model. Results show that our approach can substantially outperform several state-of-the-art unsupervised systems, and even achieves competitive performance compared to supervised methods.

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Towards Improving Neural Named Entity Recognition with Gazetteers
Tianyu Liu | Jin-Ge Yao | Chin-Yew Lin
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Most of the recently proposed neural models for named entity recognition have been purely data-driven, with a strong emphasis on getting rid of the efforts for collecting external resources or designing hand-crafted features. This could increase the chance of overfitting since the models cannot access any supervision signal beyond the small amount of annotated data, limiting their power to generalize beyond the annotated entities. In this work, we show that properly utilizing external gazetteers could benefit segmental neural NER models. We add a simple module on the recently proposed hybrid semi-Markov CRF architecture and observe some promising results.

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Towards Comprehensive Description Generation from Factual Attribute-value Tables
Tianyu Liu | Fuli Luo | Pengcheng Yang | Wei Wu | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

The comprehensive descriptions for factual attribute-value tables, which should be accurate, informative and loyal, can be very helpful for end users to understand the structured data in this form. However previous neural generators might suffer from key attributes missing, less informative and groundless information problems, which impede the generation of high-quality comprehensive descriptions for tables. To relieve these problems, we first propose force attention (FA) method to encourage the generator to pay more attention to the uncovered attributes to avoid potential key attributes missing. Furthermore, we propose reinforcement learning for information richness to generate more informative as well as more loyal descriptions for tables. In our experiments, we utilize the widely used WIKIBIO dataset as a benchmark. Besides, we create WB-filter based on WIKIBIO to test our model in the simulated user-oriented scenarios, in which the generated descriptions should accord with particular user interests. Experimental results show that our model outperforms the state-of-the-art baselines on both automatic and human evaluation.

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Learning to Control the Fine-grained Sentiment for Story Ending Generation
Fuli Luo | Damai Dai | Pengcheng Yang | Tianyu Liu | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui | Xu Sun
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Automatic story ending generation is an interesting and challenging task in natural language generation. Previous studies are mainly limited to generate coherent, reasonable and diversified story endings, and few works focus on controlling the sentiment of story endings. This paper focuses on generating a story ending which meets the given fine-grained sentiment intensity. There are two major challenges to this task. First is the lack of story corpus which has fine-grained sentiment labels. Second is the difficulty of explicitly controlling sentiment intensity when generating endings. Therefore, we propose a generic and novel framework which consists of a sentiment analyzer and a sentimental generator, respectively addressing the two challenges. The sentiment analyzer adopts a series of methods to acquire sentiment intensities of the story dataset. The sentimental generator introduces the sentiment intensity into decoder via a Gaussian Kernel Layer to control the sentiment of the output. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first endeavor to control the fine-grained sentiment for story ending generation without manually annotating sentiment labels. Experiments show that our proposed framework can generate story endings which are not only more coherent and fluent but also able to meet the given sentiment intensity better.

2018

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Leveraging Gloss Knowledge in Neural Word Sense Disambiguation by Hierarchical Co-Attention
Fuli Luo | Tianyu Liu | Zexue He | Qiaolin Xia | Zhifang Sui | Baobao Chang
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

The goal of Word Sense Disambiguation (WSD) is to identify the correct meaning of a word in the particular context. Traditional supervised methods only use labeled data (context), while missing rich lexical knowledge such as the gloss which defines the meaning of a word sense. Recent studies have shown that incorporating glosses into neural networks for WSD has made significant improvement. However, the previous models usually build the context representation and gloss representation separately. In this paper, we find that the learning for the context and gloss representation can benefit from each other. Gloss can help to highlight the important words in the context, thus building a better context representation. Context can also help to locate the key words in the gloss of the correct word sense. Therefore, we introduce a co-attention mechanism to generate co-dependent representations for the context and gloss. Furthermore, in order to capture both word-level and sentence-level information, we extend the attention mechanism in a hierarchical fashion. Experimental results show that our model achieves the state-of-the-art results on several standard English all-words WSD test datasets.

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Phrase-level Self-Attention Networks for Universal Sentence Encoding
Wei Wu | Houfeng Wang | Tianyu Liu | Shuming Ma
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Universal sentence encoding is a hot topic in recent NLP research. Attention mechanism has been an integral part in many sentence encoding models, allowing the models to capture context dependencies regardless of the distance between the elements in the sequence. Fully attention-based models have recently attracted enormous interest due to their highly parallelizable computation and significantly less training time. However, the memory consumption of their models grows quadratically with the sentence length, and the syntactic information is neglected. To this end, we propose Phrase-level Self-Attention Networks (PSAN) that perform self-attention across words inside a phrase to capture context dependencies at the phrase level, and use the gated memory updating mechanism to refine each word’s representation hierarchically with longer-term context dependencies captured in a larger phrase. As a result, the memory consumption can be reduced because the self-attention is performed at the phrase level instead of the sentence level. At the same time, syntactic information can be easily integrated in the model. Experiment results show that PSAN can achieve the state-of-the-art performance across a plethora of NLP tasks including binary and multi-class classification, natural language inference and sentence similarity.

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Incorporating Glosses into Neural Word Sense Disambiguation
Fuli Luo | Tianyu Liu | Qiaolin Xia | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Word Sense Disambiguation (WSD) aims to identify the correct meaning of polysemous words in the particular context. Lexical resources like WordNet which are proved to be of great help for WSD in the knowledge-based methods. However, previous neural networks for WSD always rely on massive labeled data (context), ignoring lexical resources like glosses (sense definitions). In this paper, we integrate the context and glosses of the target word into a unified framework in order to make full use of both labeled data and lexical knowledge. Therefore, we propose GAS: a gloss-augmented WSD neural network which jointly encodes the context and glosses of the target word. GAS models the semantic relationship between the context and the gloss in an improved memory network framework, which breaks the barriers of the previous supervised methods and knowledge-based methods. We further extend the original gloss of word sense via its semantic relations in WordNet to enrich the gloss information. The experimental results show that our model outperforms the state-of-the-art systems on several English all-words WSD datasets.

2017

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Affinity-Preserving Random Walk for Multi-Document Summarization
Kexiang Wang | Tianyu Liu | Zhifang Sui | Baobao Chang
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Multi-document summarization provides users with a short text that summarizes the information in a set of related documents. This paper introduces affinity-preserving random walk to the summarization task, which preserves the affinity relations of sentences by an absorbing random walk model. Meanwhile, we put forward adjustable affinity-preserving random walk to enforce the diversity constraint of summarization in the random walk process. The ROUGE evaluations on DUC 2003 topic-focused summarization task and DUC 2004 generic summarization task show the good performance of our method, which has the best ROUGE-2 recall among the graph-based ranking methods.

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A Soft-label Method for Noise-tolerant Distantly Supervised Relation Extraction
Tianyu Liu | Kexiang Wang | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Distant-supervised relation extraction inevitably suffers from wrong labeling problems because it heuristically labels relational facts with knowledge bases. Previous sentence level denoise models don’t achieve satisfying performances because they use hard labels which are determined by distant supervision and immutable during training. To this end, we introduce an entity-pair level denoise method which exploits semantic information from correctly labeled entity pairs to correct wrong labels dynamically during training. We propose a joint score function which combines the relational scores based on the entity-pair representation and the confidence of the hard label to obtain a new label, namely a soft label, for certain entity pair. During training, soft labels instead of hard labels serve as gold labels. Experiments on the benchmark dataset show that our method dramatically reduces noisy instances and outperforms other state-of-the-art systems.

2016

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Encoding Temporal Information for Time-Aware Link Prediction
Tingsong Jiang | Tianyu Liu | Tao Ge | Lei Sha | Sujian Li | Baobao Chang | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of the 2016 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

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Towards Time-Aware Knowledge Graph Completion
Tingsong Jiang | Tianyu Liu | Tao Ge | Lei Sha | Baobao Chang | Sujian Li | Zhifang Sui
Proceedings of COLING 2016, the 26th International Conference on Computational Linguistics: Technical Papers

Knowledge graph (KG) completion adds new facts to a KG by making inferences from existing facts. Most existing methods ignore the time information and only learn from time-unknown fact triples. In dynamic environments that evolve over time, it is important and challenging for knowledge graph completion models to take into account the temporal aspects of facts. In this paper, we present a novel time-aware knowledge graph completion model that is able to predict links in a KG using both the existing facts and the temporal information of the facts. To incorporate the happening time of facts, we propose a time-aware KG embedding model using temporal order information among facts. To incorporate the valid time of facts, we propose a joint time-aware inference model based on Integer Linear Programming (ILP) using temporal consistencyinformationasconstraints. Wefurtherintegratetwomodelstomakefulluseofglobal temporal information. We empirically evaluate our models on time-aware KG completion task. Experimental results show that our time-aware models achieve the state-of-the-art on temporal facts consistently.