July 30th, 2005,
location: University Buildings, please consult the main IJCAI web page

Sponsored by France-Telecom

Link to download the proceedings : KRAQ05


8.15 Welcome

Session 1     8.30-10.30
Being Erlan Shen: Identifying Answerable Questions,
    H. Yu, C. Sable, USA.
Reasoning over Depedency Relations for QA,
    G. Bouma, J. Mur, G. Van Noord, the Netherlands.
Towards Answering procedural Questions,
    F. Aouladomar, France.
Towards a Framework for the Summarization of Help-Desk Responses
    Y. Marom, I. Zukerman, Australia.

10h30-11h00 Coffee break

11h00 – 11h45   Invited talk by Johan Bos, UK

11h45-12h15    Short papers and posters
Toward Question Answering for Simulation,
    M. Core et ali. USA
A Question-Answering System for Portuguese,
    C. Prolo et ali., Brasil and Portugal
Semantic Knowledge in Question-Answering Systems,
    V. Barbier et ali., France
A Typology and Feature Set for Questions,
    L. Aunimo, Finland
Recognition of Alternation Paraphrases: a robust and exhaustive symbolic approach,
    M. Amoia and C. Gardent, France.

12h15-13h30  lunch break and poster visits

Session 2    13h30-15h00
On the Effective Use of Cyc in a Question-answering System,
    J. Curtis et ali., USA.
An Inference Model for Semantic Entailment and Question Answering
    R. de Salvo Braz et ali., USA.
Using Information Fusion for Open-Domain Question Answering,
    T. Dalmas, B. Webber, UK.

Coffee Break

Session 3    15h30-16h45
Supervised Machine learning Techniques for Question Answering,
I.    Zukerman et ali., Australia.
Invited talk : Marie-Francine Moens, Belgium (45 mns)

Panel Session: 17h00 – 18h00  
Moderators: M. Minock (Sweden) and T. Poibeau (France)


The introduction of reasoning capabilities in question-answering (QA) systems appeared in the late 70s. A second generation of QA systems, aimed at being cooperative, emerged in the late 80s - early 90s. In these systems, quite advanced reasoning models were developed on closed domains to go beyond the production of direct responses to a query, in particular when the query has no response or when it contains misconceptions. More recently, systems such as JAVELIN, Inference WEB or Cogex, operating over open domains, integrate gradually inferential components, but not as advanced as those of the 90s. Performances of these systems in the recent TREC-QA tracks show that reasoning components do improve the response relevance and accuracy. They can also potentially be much more cooperative. However, there is still a long way before being able to produce accurate, cooperative and robust QA systems.

Recent foundational, methodological and technological developments in knowledge representation (e.g. ontologies, knowledge bases incorporating various forms of incompleteness or uncertainty), advanced reasoning forms (e.g. relaxation, intensional calculus, data fusion), not necessarily based on unification, advanced language processing resources and techniques (for question processing as well as for generating responses), and recent progress in HLT make it possible to foresee the elaboration of much more accurate, cooperative and robust systems dedicated to answering questions from textual data, from e.g. online texts or web pages, operating either on open or closed domains.

The workshop will be organized around a few major questions of interest to a number of AI, NLP, HLT and pragmatics people. One main question is the characterization of those reasoning procedures that need to be developed to answer questions, either on closed or on open domains. Then, are enhancing reasoning procedures and accuracy of knowledge representation sufficient conditions to improve responses ? If not, what is the role of language processing and what are the relevant paradigms (e.g. lexical inference) ? How do language and reasoning interact ? Next, what are the language models and techniques appropriate for producing responses which sound natural for the user (relevant, fluid, of an appropriate granularity, with terms the user understands, etc.). Another perspective is the role of pragmatics as a means, for example, to better capture the user's goals and intentions from his query, and therefore to better organize the response. Pragmatics is also of importance to better analyse the potential implicatures the user may draw from NL responses, in particular when the response is not direct.

List of topics


The goal of this workshop is to enhance cooperation between participants with an AI background and the NLP and question-answering communities. Contributors must be opened to interactions with the different workshop areas. The programme committee will care to have a balanced number of participants from the different areas concerned: reasoning and inference, knowledge representation, NLP (in particular language generation), question-answering, human language technology and pragmatics.
Although papers will obviously have a dominant theme, it is important that they contain material from at least 2 disciplines of the workshop (AI, NLP, pragmatics, ...).
To encourage an athmosphere appropriate for a workshop, we plan to:
    - have a 15mn discussion at the end of each session,
    - have a panel on future directions of intelligent question-answering and on how the different disciplines can interact as optimally as possible,
    - plan demos on portable machines.

Submission format:

We welcome short papers (max 5 pages), describing projects or ongoing research and long papers (max. 10 pages), that relate more established results. Papers must be sent in .pdf format. The format to use for papers and abstracts is the same as for IJCAI. Please follow the IJCAI formatting instructions and use the supplied Word templates or Latex sources. The title page (no separate title page is needed) should include the following information:



All accepted papers (long and short) will be published in the workshop proceedings. A book publication is under project.


The registration fees include attendance at the workshop and a copy of the workshop proceedings. Registration instructions will be posted here.

Contact persons:

Dr. Farah Benamara and Dr. Patrick Saint-Dizier (benamara@irit.fr, stdizier@irit.fr)

Programme committee decisions will be co-chaired with:
Dr. Marie-Francine Moens (marie-france.moens@law.kulewen.ac.be)

Programme Committee

Farah Benamara, IRIT, France
Johan Bos, University of Edinburgh, UK
Sanda Harabagiu, University of Texas, USA
Eduard Hovy, ISI, USA
Daniel Kayser, LIPN, France
Mark Maybury, The MITRE Corp., USA
Michael Minock, University of Umea, Sweden
Marie-Francine Moens, KUL, Belgium
Jacques Moeschler, Geneva university, Switzerland
Dan Moldovan, University of Texas, USA
John Prager, IBM, USA
Ehud Reiter, University of Aberdeen, UK
Maarten de Rijke, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Gérard Sabah, LIMSI, CNRS, France
Patrick Saint Dizier, IRIT, CNRS, France
Manfred Stede, University of Potsdam, Germany
Mathiew Stone, Center of Cognitive Science, Rutgers, USA
Kees Van Deemter, University of Aberdeen, UK
Ellen Voorhees, NIST, USA
Bonnie Webber, University of Edinburgh, UK