Workshop on Extracting and Using Constructions in NLP

Important dates | Location | Proceedings | Program committee | Program

A construction is a recurring, or otherwise noteworthy congregation of linguistic entities. Examples include collocations ("hermetically sealed"), (idiomatic) expressions with fixed constituents ("kick the bucket"), expressions with (semi-)optional constituents ("hungry as a X"), and sequences of grammatical categories ([det][adj][noun]). As can be seen by these examples, constructions are a diverse breed, and what constitutes a linguistic construction is largely an open question.

Despite (or perhaps due to) the inherent vagues of the concept, constructions enjoy increasing interest in both theoretical linguistics and in natural language processing. A symptom of the former is the Construction grammar framework, and a symptom of the latter is the growing awareness of the impact of constructions on different kinds of information access applications. Constructions are an interesting phenomenon because they constitute a middleway in the syntax-lexicon continuum, and because they show great potential in tackling infamously difficult NLP tasks.

We encourage submissions in all areas of constructions-based research, with special focus on:

Important dates:

Extended submission deadline: April 6
First review: April 20
Final papers due: May 4
Workshop: May 14


NoDaLiDa 2009, Odense, Denmark. Workshop participants must register for the main conference. Please see the conference website for more information regarding fees and registration.
The workshop will be in room 0-98. For more details regarding the venue, please see the NoDaLiDa 2009 website.


Proceedings are available here.


Magnus Sahlgren, SICS (
Ola Knutsson, KTH (

Program committee:

Benjamin Bergen, University of Hawaii
Stefan Evert, University of Osnabrück
Auður Hauksdóttir, University of Iceland
Emma Sköldberg, University of Gothenburg
Jan-Ola Östman, University of Helsinki


09:00-09:10 Opening remarks
09:10-09:45 Jussi Karlgren: Constructions, patterns, and finding features more sophisticated than term occurrence in text (Keynote).
09:50-10:10 Sara Stymne: Definite Noun Phrases in Statistical Machine Translation into Danish.
10:10-10:30 Katja Keßelmeier, Tibor Kiss, Antje Müller, Claudia Roch, Tobias Stadtfeld and Jan Strunk: Mining for Preposition-Noun Constructions in German.
10:30-11:00 Coffee break
11:00-11:20 Krista Lagus, Oskar Kohonen and Sami Virpioja: Towards Unsupervised Learning of Constructions from Text.
11:20-11:40 Kadri Muischnek and Heete Sahkai: Using collocationfinding methods to extract constructions and to estimate their productivity.
11:40-12:00 Robert Östling and Ola Knutsson: A corpus-based tool for helping writers with Swedish collocations.
12:00-12:20 Gunnar Eriksson: K - A construction substitute.
12:20-13:00 Discussion.