Helsinki-NLP at TALN 2023

TALN (Traitement Automatique du Language Naturel) is an annual conference covering topics from computational linguistics, NLP and speech processing organized by ATALA, the French association for NLP. This year’s edition took place from 5 – 9 June 2023 in Paris and was collocated with CORIA (Conférence en Recherche d’Information et Applications

Two of our members participated: Timothee Mickus and Aleksandra Miletić. More details below!

Presentation on low-resourced languages
Aleksandra presented a paper on lemmatization experiments for Occitan in a session dedicated to low-resource settings. During the coffee break there was an interesting exchange of ideas with researchers working on Alsatian, another minority language spoken in France.

Timothee won Best Thesis Award
Timothee won ATALA’s Best Thesis Award for 2023 for his thesis On the Status of Word Embeddings as Implementations of the Distributional Hypothesis. ATALA’s Best Thesis Award is given to outstanding PhD theses defended in a francophone university during the last two years. Exceptionally, this year there were two awardees, the other being Tobias Mayer for his thesis Fouille d’arguments à partir des essais cliniques. The jury  congratulated both authors on the high quality of their work.

Timothee’s thesis was in particular saluted for the depth of his theoretical and practical contributions. Timothee’s presentation during a plenary session prompted a long and lively discussion, showing the interest of the community in the topic.

Aleksandra was elected to the Board of ATALA
During the conference, the elections for the Board of ATALA also took place. Aleksandra was among the members elected for a period of three years. The Board coordinates ATALA’s various activities, such as the organization of the TALN conference, the edition of the TAL journal, the administration of the LN mailing list, the organization of workshops and the attribuiton of the Best Thesis Award.


Jörg Tiedemann elected as the president of NEALT

Jörg Tiedemann will succeed Barbara Plank as the next president of the Northern European Association for Language Technology (NEALT). The elections were held during the NoDaLiDa conference in Faroe Islands (22-24 May 2023). Jörg will take office in January 2024 for a period of two years.

NEALT is a scientific, non-profit and non-political association focused on promoting language technologies developed in the Northern European countries and for the languages spoken in those countries. During his presidency, Jörg will be giving special attention to the following topics:

Supporting the organisation of the next edition of NoDaLiDa
NoDaLiDa (Nordic Conference on Computational Linguistics) is a bi-annual event showcasing work on all aspects of computational linguistics, NLP and speech processing, including interdisciplinary work with neighbouring disciplines such as linguistics or psychology. The next iteration will be a jubilee: it will mark the 25th edition of the conference.

Promoting NEJLT
NEJLT (Northern European Journal of Language Technology) publishes high quality peer-reviewed research in computational linguistics and language technology for all natural languages. NEJLT’s goal is to provide an alternative to the high-pace publication process typical of the top language technology conferences. The hope is that making journal publications more accessible will reduce the reviewing load of the community and have a positive effect on the quality of published research.

Improving  NEALT’s visibility, in particular for its Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
NEALT currently has five SIGs, which serve as forums for communities working on different topics to exchange ideas and share resources. The existing SIGs are dedicated to the Nordic Constraint Grammar, technology infrastructures in the North European region, language technology-related teaching, intelligent computer-assisted language learning, and high-performance computing for NLP in the Nordics. NEALT is also open to establishing new SIGs: instructions for starting a new one are available here.

Community building
All of NEALT’s activities above strive to support collaborations between people and teams working on language technologies in the Nordic countries. In the coming years, the association will be driving for more shared projects, co-organized scientific events and joint publications across the region.

Supporting young researchers and students
In the 2023 edition of NoDaLiDa, more than half of the accepted papers were student papers (i.e., the first author was a student). An important aspect of NEALT’s activity will be ensuring support for young researchers and especially students to attend scientific events such as NoDaLiDa.