Modelling Pro-drop with the Rational Speech Acts Model

WS 2018  ·  Guanyi Chen, Kees Van Deemter, Chenghua Lin ·

We extend the classic Referring Expressions Generation task by considering zero pronouns in {``}pro-drop{''} languages such as Chinese, modelling their use by means of the Bayesian Rational Speech Acts model (Frank and Goodman, 2012). By assuming that highly salient referents are most likely to be referred to by zero pronouns (i.e., pro-drop is more likely for salient referents than the less salient ones), the model offers an attractive explanation of a phenomenon not previously addressed probabilistically.

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