Understanding Negations in Information Processing: Learning from Replicating Human Behavior

39 Pages Posted: 19 Apr 2017

See all articles by Nicolas Pröllochs

Nicolas Pröllochs

University of Freiburg - Information Systems Research; Justus-Liebig-University Giessen

Stefan Feuerriegel

ETH Zürich

Dirk Neumann

University of Freiburg

Date Written: April 18, 2017


Information systems experience an ever-growing volume of unstructured data, particularly in the form of textual materials. This represents a rich source of information from which one can create value for people, organizations and businesses. For instance, recommender systems can benefit from automatically understanding preferences based on user reviews or social media. However, it is difficult for computer programs to correctly infer meaning from narrative content. One major challenge is negations that invert the interpretation of words and sentences. As a remedy, this paper proposes a novel learning strategy to detect negations: we apply reinforcement learning to and a policy that replicates the human perception of negations based on an exogenous response, such as a user rating for reviews. Our method yields several benefits, as it eliminates the former need for expensive and subjective manual labeling in an intermediate stage. Moreover, the inferred policy can be used to derive statistical inferences and implications regarding how humans process and act on negations.

Keywords: unstructured data, information processing, decision-making, natural language processing, reinforcement learning, negations

Suggested Citation

Pröllochs, Nicolas and Pröllochs, Nicolas and Feuerriegel, Stefan and Neumann, Dirk, Understanding Negations in Information Processing: Learning from Replicating Human Behavior (April 18, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2954460 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2954460

Nicolas Pröllochs (Contact Author)

University of Freiburg - Information Systems Research ( email )

Kollegiengebäude II
Platz der Alten Synagoge
Freiburg, 79098

Justus-Liebig-University Giessen ( email )

Licher Strasse 74
Giessen, 35394

Stefan Feuerriegel

ETH Zürich ( email )

Weinbergstr. 56/58
Zürich, 8092

HOME PAGE: http://www.mis.ethz.ch/

Dirk Neumann

University of Freiburg ( email )

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Wirtscha.inf.
Kollegiengebäude II, Platz der Alten Synagoge
Freiburg im Breisgau, 79098

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