Proceedings of the Sixth Workshop on Universal Dependencies (UDW, GURT/SyntaxFest 2023)

Loïc Grobol, Francis Tyers (Editors)

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Washington, D.C.
UDW | SyntaxFest
Association for Computational Linguistics
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Proceedings of the Sixth Workshop on Universal Dependencies (UDW, GURT/SyntaxFest 2023)
Loïc Grobol | Francis Tyers

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Building a Universal Dependencies Treebank for a Polysynthetic Language: the Case of Abaza
Alexey Koshevoy | Anastasia Panova | Ilya Makarchuk

In this paper, we discuss the challenges that we faced during the construction of a Universal Dependencies treebank for Abaza, a polysynthetic Northwest Caucasian language. We propose an alternative to the morpheme-level annotation of polysynthetic languages introduced in Park et al. (2021). Our approach aims at reducing the number of morphological features, yet providing all the necessary information for the comprehensive representation of all the syntactic relations. Besides, we suggest to add one language-specific relation needed for annotating repetitions in spoken texts and present several solutions that aim at increasing cross-linguistic comparability of our data.

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Universalising Latin Universal Dependencies: a harmonisation of Latin treebanks in UD
Federica Gamba | Daniel Zeman

This paper presents the harmonisation process carried out on the five treebanks available for Latin in Universal Dependencies, with the aim of eliminating the discrepancies in their annotation styles. Indeed, this is the first issue to be addressed when parsing Latin, as significant drops in parsing accuracy on different Latin treebanks have been repeatedly observed. Latin syntactic variability surely accounts for this, but parsing results are as well affected by divergent annotation choices. By analysing where annotations differ, we propose a Python-based alignment of the five UD treebanks. Consequently, the impact of annotation choices on accuracy scores is assessed by performing parsing experiments with UDPipe and Stanza.

Sinhala Dependency Treebank (STB)
Chamila Liyanage | Kengatharaiyer Sarveswaran | Thilini Nadungodage | Randil Pushpananda

This paper reports the development of the first dependency treebank for the Sinhala language (STB). Sinhala, which is morphologically rich, is a low-resource language with few linguistic and computational resources available publicly. This treebank consists of 100 sentences taken from a large contemporary written text corpus. These sentences were annotated manually according to the Universal Dependencies framework. In this paper, apart from elaborating on the approach that has been followed to create the treebank, we have also discussed some interesting syntactic constructions found in the corpus and how we have handled them using the current Universal Dependencies specification.

Methodological issues regarding the semi-automatic UD treebank creation of under-resourced languages: the case of Pomak
Stella Markantonatou | Nicolaos Th. Constantinides | Vivian Stamou | Vasileios Arampatzakis | Panagiotis G. Krimpas | George Pavlidis

Pomak is an endangered oral Slavic language of Thrace/Greece. We present a short description of its interesting morphological and syntactic features in the UD framework. Because the morphological annotation of the treebank takes advantage of existing resources, it requires a different methodological approach from the one adopted for syntactic annotation that has started from scratch. It also requires the option of obtaining morphological predictions/evaluation separately from the syntactic ones with state-of-the-art NLP tools. Active annotation is applied in various settings in order to identify the best model that would facilitate the ongoing syntactic annotation.

Analysis of Corpus-based Word-Order Typological Methods
Diego Alves | Božo Bekavac | Daniel Zeman | Marko Tadić

This article presents a comparative analysis of four different syntactic typological approaches applied to 20 different languages. We compared three specific quantitative methods, using parallel CoNLL-U corpora, to the classification obtained via syntactic features provided by a typological database (lang2vec). First, we analyzed the Marsagram linear approach which consists of extracting the frequency word-order patterns regarding the position of components inside syntactic nodes. The second approach considers the relative position of heads and dependents, and the third is based simply on the relative position of verbs and objects. From the results, it was possible to observe that each method provides different language clusters which can be compared to the classic genealogical classification (the lang2vec and the head and dependent methods being the closest). As different word-order phenomena are considered in these specific typological strategies, each one provides a different angle of analysis to be applied according to the precise needs of the researchers.

Rule-based semantic interpretation for Universal Dependencies
Jamie Y. Findlay | Saeedeh Salimifar | Ahmet Yıldırım | Dag T. T. Haug

In this paper, we present a system for generating semantic representations from Universal Dependencies syntactic parses. The foundation of our pipeline is a rule-based interpretation system, designed to be as universal as possible, which produces the correct semantic structure; the content of this structure can then be filled in by additional (sometimes language-specific) post-processing. The rules which generate semantic resources rely as far as possible on the UD parse alone, so that they can apply to any language for which such a parse can be given (a much larger number than the number of languages for which detailed semantically annotated corpora are available). We discuss our general approach, and highlight areas where the UD annotation scheme makes semantic interpretation less straightforward. We compare our results with the Parallel Meaning Bank, and show that when it comes to modelling semantic structure, our approach shows potential, but also discuss some areas for expansion.

Are UD Treebanks Getting More Consistent? A Report Card for English UD
Amir Zeldes | Nathan Schneider

Recent efforts to consolidate guidelines and treebanks in the Universal Dependencies project raise the expectation that joint training and dataset comparison is increasingly possible for high-resource languages such as English, which have multiple corpora. Focusing on the two largest UD English treebanks, we examine progress in data consolidation and answer several questions: Are UD English treebanks becoming more internally consistent? Are they becoming more like each other and to what extent? Is joint training a good idea, and if so, since which UD version? Our results indicate that while consolidation has made progress, joint models may still suffer from inconsistencies, which hamper their ability to leverage a larger pool of training data.

Introducing Morphology in Universal Dependencies Japanese
Chihiro Taguchi | David Chiang

This paper discusses the need for including morphological features in Japanese Universal Dependencies (UD). In the current version (v2.11) of the Japanese UD treebanks, sentences are tokenized at the morpheme level, and almost no morphological feature annotation is used. However, Japanese is not an isolating language that lacks morphological inflection but is an agglutinative language. Given this situation, we introduce a tentative scheme for retokenization and morphological feature annotation for Japanese UD. Then, we measure and compare the morphological complexity of Japanese with other languages to demonstrate that the proposed tokenizations show similarities to synthetic languages reflecting the linguistic typology.