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A Systematic Analysis of Sentence Update Detection for Temporal Summarization

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Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNISA,volume 10193)


Temporal summarization algorithms filter large volumes of streaming documents and emit sentences that constitute salient event updates. Systems developed typically combine in an ad-hoc fashion traditional retrieval and document summarization algorithms to filter sentences inside documents. Retrieval and summarization algorithms however have been developed to operate on static document collections. Therefore, a deep understanding of the limitations of these approaches when applied to a temporal summarization task is necessary. In this work we present a systematic analysis of the methods used for retrieval of update sentences in temporal summarization, and demonstrate the limitations and potentials of these methods by examining the retrievability and the centrality of event updates, as well as the existence of intrinsic inherent characteristics in update versus non-update sentences.


  • Temporal summarization
  • Content analysis
  • Event modeling

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Fig. 1.
Fig. 2.


  1. 1.

    TREC TS focuses on large events with a wide impact, such as natural catastrophes (storms, earthquakes), conflicts (bombings, protests, riots, shootings) and accidents.

  2. 2.

    In total we extract 8,471 unigrams and 1,169,276 bigrams using the log-likelihood ratio weighting scheme.

  3. 3.

    We discard event types for which there is not enough annotated data available.

  4. 4.

  5. 5.

    Word2Vec was trained on the set of gold standard updates from the TREC TS 2013 and TREC TS 2014 collections.

  6. 6.

    No documents were released for event 7, hence the white row in the heatmap.

  7. 7.

    For events 14, 21, 24 and 25 we cannot report on any centrality scores across relevant documents due to the size of the data and the inability of LexRank to handle it - hence the white rows in the heatmap in columns (B). The average values for the precision measures below the heatmap are computed excluding these events.


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This research was supported by the Dutch national program COMMIT. All content represents the opinion of the authors, which is not necessarily shared or endorsed by their respective employers and/or sponsors.

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Correspondence to Evangelos Kanoulas .

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Gârbacea, C., Kanoulas, E. (2017). A Systematic Analysis of Sentence Update Detection for Temporal Summarization. In: , et al. Advances in Information Retrieval. ECIR 2017. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 10193. Springer, Cham.

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