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Linking Objects to Vectors in distributional semantics: A framework to anchor corpus-based meaning representations to the external world

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "LOVe" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: VIA CALEPINA 14
city: TRENTO
postcode: 38122

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Italy [IT]
 Project website
 Total cost 180˙277 €
 EC max contribution 180˙277 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-06-01   to  2017-05-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI TRENTO IT (TRENTO) coordinator 180˙277.00


 Project objective

Language mediates between concepts in our mind and the things they refer to in the world. Semantic theories are typically biased towards conceptual or referential aspects. My goal is to develop a theory of meaning that takes both aspects into account, and is supported by computational modelling experiments, so that it will also enable computers to match linguistic expressions with entities in the world. This is a highly interdisciplinary proposal that will bring computational linguistics, artificial intelligence, and theoretical linguistics forward.

My model is based on distributional semantics, a scalable and flexible approach to computational semantics that, by inducing meaning representations from naturally occurring data with statistical methods, can model large portions of the lexicon and account for nuances in meaning that pose difficulties to traditional semantic theories. Distributional semantics has so far largely eschewed the reference issue, by testing its models on language-internal tasks. The project bridges this language-world gap, and integrates the distributional framework into a referential semantic theory. The project promises to advance our scientific understanding of language, a defining trait of the human species, and to make significant progress towards building computers we can talk to, with the ensuing strong impact on our everyday lives.

Even though I am an established researcher in computational semantics and also contributed to semantic theory, I still need to fully develop my own line of research to become a leading, independent researcher in Europe. Carrying out the present proposal at the University of Trento CLIC laboratory will be a fundamental step towards achieving my goal, since CLIC is a world leader in distributional semantics. Conversely, my unique profile, addressing theoretical linguistic questions through computational means, will fill a gap in the lab, widening the scope and outreach of the research conducted at CLIC.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2016 Ngoc-Quan Pham, Germán Kruszewski, Gemma Boleda
Convolutional Neural Network Language Models
published pages: 1153-1162, ISSN: , DOI: 10.18653/v1/D16-1123
Proceedings of the 2016 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing 2019-07-23
2015 Álvaro Corral, Gemma Boleda, Ramon Ferrer-i-Cancho
Zipf’s Law for Word Frequencies: Word Forms versus Lemmas in Long Texts
published pages: e0129031, ISSN: 1932-6203, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0129031
PLOS ONE 10/7 2019-07-23
2016 Gemma Boleda, Aurélie Herbelot (eds.)
Special Issue on Formal Distributional Semantics
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Computational Linguistics 42 2019-07-23
2015 Martha Palmer, Gemma Boleda, Paolo Rosso
Proceedings of the Fourth Joint Conference on Lexical and Computational Semantics
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
2015 Abhijeet Gupta, Gemma Boleda, Marco Baroni, Sebastian Padó
Distributional vectors encode referential attributes
published pages: 12-21, ISSN: , DOI:
Proceedings of the 2015 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing 2019-07-23
2016 Gemma Boleda, Aurélie Herbelot
Formal Distributional Semantics: Introduction to the Special Issue
published pages: 619-635, ISSN: 0891-2017, DOI: 10.1162/COLI_a_00261
Computational Linguistics 42/4 2019-07-23
2016 Ionut Sorodoc, Angeliki Lazaridou, Gemma Boleda, AurÄ—lie Herbelot, Sandro Pezzelle, Raffaella Bernardi
``Look, some Green Circles!\'\': Learning to Quantify from Images
published pages: 75-59, ISSN: , DOI:
Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Vision and Language 2019-07-23
2016 Denis Paperno, Germán Kruszewski, Angeliki Lazaridou, Ngoc Quan Pham, Raffaella Bernardi, Sandro Pezzelle, Marco Baroni, Gemma Boleda, Raquel Fernandez
The LAMBADA dataset: Word prediction requiring a broad discourse context
published pages: 1525-1534, ISSN: , DOI: 10.18653/v1/P16-1144
Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers) 2019-07-23
2015 Raffa Bernardi, Gemma Boleda, Raffa Fernandez, Denis Paperno
Distributional semantics in use
published pages: 95-101, ISSN: , DOI:
Proceedings of EMNLP 2015 Workshop LSDSem 2015: Linking Models of Lexical, Sentential and Discourse-level Semantics 2019-07-23

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