Special issue of "Dialogue and Discourse" on: "Beyond semantics: the challenges of annotating pragmatic and discourse phenomena" (please find the full call at http://www.linguistics.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/~dipper/specialIssue.html).
** Guest Editors **
- Stefanie Dipper, Ruhr University Bochum, Germany - Heike Zinsmeister, Konstanz University, Germany - Bonnie Webber, Edinburgh University, UK
** Important Dates **
- Sep 7 2011: Open call - Nov 15 2011: Expression of interest, three-page abstract - Feb 1 2012: Submission deadline, full papers - April 5 2012: Notification of acceptance - May 15 2012: Final versions due - June 15 2012: Publication (tentative date)
** Topics of Interest **
The topic of the special issue is "Beyond semantics: the challenges of annotating pragmatic and discourse phenomena". The focus is on the problems and challenges that are specific to annotating phenomena that are "beyond semantics", i.e., pragmatic and discourse-related phenomena (e.g. anaphoric reference, information structure, discourse relations, discourse function, presupposition, subjectivity.
We see it as an important desideratum to promote the application of linguistic theories to naturally-occurring texts. This would enhance the search for operationalization of theoretical concepts, which probably then can be annotated with higher reliability. It would open up corpus-based development and validation of theoretical hypotheses. At the same time, operationalized theoretical concepts and reliable annotations would facilitate the use of pragmatic and discourse-related knowledge in computational linguistics.
The overall guiding question of the special issue is: How do we annotate abstract pragmatic and discourse information? Such information is frequently not marked explicitly or unambiguously in natural language. It is usually dependent on context information, and annotators often have to reconstruct complex relations and situations from the context. Intuitions about pragmatic or discourse analysis tend to be less stable and more subjective than intuitions about syntactic or semantic phenomena.
Example questions that we would like to see addressed in the special issue are:
- In annotating texts, which methods are applied? For instance, to what extent are linguistic concepts replaced by surface proxies?
- To what extent does the format of annotation (different layers vs. one layer only) influence the annotation task?
- What kind of instructions are given to the annotators: Do they have to generalize from a set of given examples? Are they given a formal definition, whose applicability they are assumed to always test before choosing a particular label? Are there linguistic tests to guide the annotation?
The idea is to gather research that reports on the generation (and exploitation) of corpora that are annotated with pragmatic or discourse-related information grounded in linguistic theory.
** Submission **
Potential contributors are invited to send an expression of interest (EOI) to the guest editors by November 15, 2011. The EOIs should consist of a title and a three-page abstract. EOIs should be directed to the guest editors via beyondsem [AT] linguistics.rub.de.
Full manuscripts need to be formatted according to "Dialogue and Discourse" author guidelines, and submitted using the journal's online manuscript submission system (see http://www.dialogue-and-discourse.org/). As a guideline, full articles should be around 30 pages, but if justified, significantly shorter or longer papers will be considered as well.
Please do not hesitate to contact us (beyondsem [AT] linguistics.rub.de) if you have any practical questions or are unsure about whether a possible topic you would like to write about would fall under this call.
** Reviewing **
The special issue aims at significant interaction between the two target audiences, theoretical linguists with an emphasis on detailed analysis of specific phenomena and computational linguists specializing in annotation. Therefore, each paper will have at least one referee from each "camp", to ensure both that the theoretical papers are technically strong and that the computational papers have sufficient empirical content.
The following people have already agreed to serve on the reviewing committee.
- Maria Averintseva-Klisch (Tuebingen University, Germany) - Cathrine Fabricius-Hansen (Oslo University, Norway) - Klaus von Heusinger (Stuttgart University, Germany) - Ralf Klabunde (Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany) - Valia Kordoni (DFKI GmbH and Saarland University, Germany) - Rebecca Passonneau (Columbia University, USA) - Massimo Poesio (University of Essex, UK, and Trento, Italy) - Kiril Simov (Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria) - Caroline Sporleder (Saarland University, Germany) - Angelika Storrer (TU Dortmund, Germany) - Michael Strube (HITS Heidelberg, Germany)
** The Journal **
Dialogue and Discourse (D&D, http://www.dialogue-and-discourse.org/) is the first peer-reviewed open access journal dedicated exclusively to work that deals with language "beyond the single sentence". The journal adopts an interdisciplinary perspective, accepting work from Linguistics, Computer Science, Psychology, Sociology, Philosophy, and other associated fields with an interest in formally, technically, empirically or experimentally rigorous approaches. The journal is committed to ensuring the highest editorial standards and rigorous peer-review of all submissions, while granting open access to all interested readers.