Encoding implicit relation requirements for relation extraction: A joint inference approach
Relation extraction is the task of identifying predefined relationship between entities, and plays an essential role in information extraction, knowledge base construction, question answering and so on. Most existing relation extractors make predictions for each entity pair locally and individually, while ignoring implicit global clues available across different entity pairs and in the knowledge base, which often leads to conflicts among local predictions from different entity pairs. This paper proposes a joint inference framework that employs such global clues to resolve disagreements among local predictions. We exploit two kinds of clues to generate constraints which can capture the implicit type and cardinality requirements of a relation. Those constraints can be examined in either hard style or soft style, both of which can be effectively explored in an integer linear program formulation. Experimental results on both English and Chinese datasets show that our proposed framework can effectively utilize those two categories of global clues and resolve the disagreements among local predictions, thus improve various relation extractors when such clues are applicable to the datasets. Our experiments also indicate that the clues learnt automatically from existing knowledge bases perform comparably to or better than those refined by human.