Plan Optimization to Bilingual Dictionary Induction for Low-resource Language Families

Arbi Haza Nasution, Yohei Murakami, Toru Ishida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Creating bilingual dictionary is the first crucial step in enriching low-resource languages. Especially for the closely related ones, it has been shown that the constraint-based approach is useful for inducing bilingual lexicons from two bilingual dictionaries via the pivot language. However, if there are no available machine-readable dictionaries as input, we need to consider manual creation by bilingual native speakers. To reach a goal of comprehensively create multiple bilingual dictionaries, even if we already have several existing machine-readable bilingual dictionaries, it is still difficult to determine the execution order of the constraint-based approach to reducing the total cost. Plan optimization is crucial in composing the order of bilingual dictionaries creation with the consideration of the methods and their costs. We formalize the plan optimization for creating bilingual dictionaries by utilizing Markov Decision Process (MDP) with the goal to get a more accurate estimation of the most feasible optimal plan with the least total cost before fully implementing the constraint-based bilingual lexicon induction. We model a prior beta distribution of bilingual lexicon induction precision with language similarity and polysemy of the topology as and parameters. It is further used to model cost function and state transition probability. We estimated the cost of all investment plans as a baseline for evaluating the proposed MDP-based approach with total cost as an evaluation metric. After utilizing the posterior beta distribution in the first batch of experiments to construct the prior beta distribution in the second batch of experiments, the result shows 61.5% of cost reduction compared to the estimated all investment plans and 39.4% of cost reduction compared to the estimated MDP optimal plan. The MDP-based proposal outperformed the baseline on the total cost.

Original languageEnglish
Article number29
JournalACM Transactions on Asian and Low-Resource Language Information Processing
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Apr
Externally publishedYes


  • Plan optimization
  • closely related languages
  • low-resource languages
  • pivot-based bilingual lexicon induction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)


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