Verb Clustering for Brazilian Portuguese

  • Carolina Scarton
  • Lin Sun
  • Karin Kipper-Schuler
  • Magali Sanches Duran
  • Martha Palmer
  • Anna Korhonen
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8403)


Levin-style classes which capture the shared syntax and semantics of verbs have proven useful for many Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks and applications. However, lexical resources which provide information about such classes are only available for a handful of worlds languages. Because manual development of such resources is extremely time consuming and cannot reliably capture domain variation in classification, methods for automatic induction of verb classes from texts have gained popularity. However, to date such methods have been applied to English and a handful of other, mainly resource-rich languages. In this paper, we apply the methods to Brazilian Portuguese - a language for which no VerbNet or automatic class induction work exists yet. Since Levin-style classification is said to have a strong cross-linguistic component, we use unsupervised clustering techniques similar to those developed for English without language-specific feature engineering. This yields interesting results which line up well with those obtained for other languages, demonstrating the cross-linguistic nature of this type of classification. However, we also discover and discuss issues which require specific consideration when aiming to optimise the performance of verb clustering for Brazilian Portuguese and other less-resourced languages.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carolina Scarton
    • 1
    • 4
  • Lin Sun
    • 2
  • Karin Kipper-Schuler
    • 3
  • Magali Sanches Duran
    • 4
  • Martha Palmer
    • 3
  • Anna Korhonen
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of SheffieldPortobelloUK
  2. 2.Computer LaboratoryUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK
  3. 3.Department of LinguisticsUniversity of Colorado at BoulderColoradoUSA
  4. 4.Interistitutional Center for Computational Linguistics, ICMCUniversity of São PauloSão CarlosUSA

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