Invited talk by Svitlana Vakulenko

SvitlanaOn Wednesday, 31st  of January Svitlana Vakulenko from the Institute for Information Business visited SDA and gave a talk entitled “Semantic Coherence for Conversational Browsing of a Knowledge Graph

Svitlana Vakulenko is a researcher at the Institute for Information Business at WU Wien and a PhD student in the Computer Science Department at TU Wien. Her research expertise lies in the area of machine learning for natural language processing. She has been involved in several international research projects and is currently working in CommuniData FFG project (, which aims to enhance the usability of Open Data and its accessibility for non-expert users in local communities. She is involved in other projects as well with the main focus on Question Answering from Tabular data and Open Data Conversational Search and Exploratory Search.

Prof. Jens Lehmann invited the speaker to the bi-weekly “SDA colloquium presentations”. The goal of her visit was to exchange experience and ideas on semantic search and dialogue systems techniques specialized for question answering, including conversational search and exploratory search. Apart from presenting various use cases where semantic exploration using table data and open data has been used she introduced a framework which models these conversational browsing systems. Svitlana shared with our group future research problems and challenges related to this research area and shown that the Semantic Coherence will provide more insight and meaningful results to the conversational browsing scenario.

In this talk, she introduces the task of conversational browsing that goes beyond Question Answering. A framework which models components of a conversational browsing system has been presented and discussed its application to the structure of a Knowledge Graph (KG). She mentioned that adding support for conversational browsing functionality shall allow users to efficiently explore a structured search space to enable the future conversational search systems not only answer a range of questions but also help to discover questions worth asking.

During the visit, SDA core research topics and main research projects were presented in an attempt to find an intersection on the future collaborations with Svitlana and her research group.

As an outcome of this visit, we expect to strengthen our research collaboration networks with the Institute of Information Business at WU Wien, mainly on combining semantic knowledge for exploratory and conversation search and apply those techniques for a very large-scale KG using our distributed analytics framework SANSA.