We, the PC co-chairs, decided to start a blog to document our progress in organizing ACL 2017, while soliciting your help and advice along the way.

As you may have noted by our affiliations, Min and I  are exactly on opposite time zones with 12 hours time difference. However, our history goes way back – we were both PhD students in the Columbia NLP group, sitting in adjacent offices. Back then, papers were still submitted in hard copy via FedEx, conference talks were presented using transparencies, and NAACL had yet to hold a separate conference. Fast forward to now, there have been many changes to how conferences are organized and run. But the internal workings of the scientific program committee still continue to be a hidden process with only the final selection of papers being observed.

With this blog, we hope to increase transparency and communication. We will share with you the important policy steps related to review quality assurance. But perhaps more importantly, we hope to solicit your feedback about improving the workflow, and as an important side-effect, the scientific program. We promise to carefully consider your suggestions but we appreciate your understanding that our ultimate decisions will not make all parties happy.990301-cochairs

3 thoughts on “Welcome

  1. Not really a policy related query:

    Could you provide undergraduates like us some do’s and don’ts of writing up an ACL / NLP related paper? Like what reviewers generally look for, how the baselines should be tested, what to include in supplementary sections etc? Most of us, do not have a well-established AI / NLP departments in our colleges. A blog post like this could be helpful to us.

    Thanks a lot for your stellar services.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Confused Undergrad:

      Thanks for writing to us and asking this question! Much has been said in the past and in various posts elsewhere about how to write an academic paper. We’d like to say this is much an art as a science, as writing a good paper requires logical argumentation, persuasive dialog and often empirical evidence. But we think it is best a good question posed to the entire ACL membership and the reviewers for ACL 2017 themselves. Both of us think this may make a useful and constructive (and perhaps provocative) piece for discussion. Once the reviewers for ACL are finalized, we hope to turn back to this issue for an open discussion with the public.

      Let us know what you think of this idea!


  2. ACL used to have a mentoring process, though this was largely aimed at people who’s first language wasn’t English. If you are new to publishing then I would suggest targetting relevant workshops first. Reviewing feedback should be better and less brutal.

    Liked by 1 person

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