Where Natural Language Processing Meets Societal Needs

Triangle Computer Science Distinguished Lecturer Series
Speaker Name
Kathleen McKeown
Date and Time
Talk will be broadcast live in D106 from UNC. Snacks will be provided.

The large amount of language available online today makes it possible to think about how to learn from this language to help address needs faced by society. In this talk, I will describe research in our group on summarization and social media analysis that addresses several different challenges. We have developed approaches that can be used to help people live and work in today’s global world, approaches to help determine where problems lie following a disaster, and approaches to identify when the social media posts of gang-involved youth in Chicago express either aggression or loss.

Short Biography

Kathleen R. McKeown is the Henry and Gertrude Rothschild Professor of Computer Science at Columbia University and the Founding Director of the Data Science Institute. She served as Director from 2012 to 2017. In earlier years, she served as Department Chair 1(998-2003) and as Vice Dean for Research for the School of Engineering and Applied Science (2010-2012). A leading scholar and researcher in the field of natural language processing, McKeown focuses her research on big data; her interests include text summarization, question answering, natural language generation, social media analysis and multilingual applications. She has received numerous honors and awards, including American Academy of Arts and Science elected member, American Association of Artificial Intelligence Fellow, a Founding Fellow of the Association for Computational Linguistics and an Association for Computing Machinery Fellow. Early on she received the National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator Award, and a National Science Foundation Faculty Award for Women. In 2010, she won both the Columbia Great Teacher Award—an honor bestowed by the students—and the Anita Borg Woman of Vision Award for Innovation.

Mohit Bansal, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill