Xingwu Liu


Enhanced Language Representation with Label Knowledge for Span Extraction
Pan Yang | Xin Cong | Zhenyu Sun | Xingwu Liu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Span extraction, aiming to extract text spans (such as words or phrases) from plain text, is a fundamental process in Information Extraction. Recent works introduce the label knowledge to enhance the text representation by formalizing the span extraction task into a question answering problem (QA Formalization), which achieves state-of-the-art performance. However, such a QA Formalization does not fully exploit the label knowledge and causes a dramatic decrease in efficiency of training/inference. To address those problems, we introduce a fresh paradigm to integrate label knowledge and further propose a novel model to explicitly and efficiently integrate label knowledge into text representations. Specifically, it encodes texts and label annotations independently and then integrates label knowledge into text representation with an elaborate-designed semantics fusion module. We conduct extensive experiments on three typical span extraction tasks: flat NER, nested NER, and event detection. The empirical results show that 1) our model achieves a new state-of-the-art performance on four benchmarks, and 2) reduces training time and inference time by 76% and 77% on average, respectively, compared with the QA Formalization paradigm.