LINGUIST List 4.360

Tue 11 May 1993

Disc: Restrictions on abstracts

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  1. Lisa Reed, abstract restrictions
  2. Judith Klavans, abstract submissions

Message 1: abstract restrictions

Date: Sat, 08 May 93 16:12:28 EDabstract restrictions
From: Lisa Reed <>
Subject: abstract restrictions

As members of the Organizing Committee for NELS 23, we have been following
the recent debate on abstract restrictions with great interest.Our experience
with multiple abstract submission may allow us to provide some useful
input to the discussion. First, we agree that if one just considers the
issue on purely academic grounds, abstract restrictions are less than
desirable, as Alex states, since the goal is to select the best abstracts
from as large a pool as possible. Unfortunately, it has been our experience
that practical considerations might lead the Committee to restrict the
number of submissions to one per author since doing otherwise greatly
increases the amount of time and effort needed to process the results.
That is, placing no or minor restrictions on the number of submissions
per author will first require much more time to sort and select appropriate
reviewers. Secondly, one must keep much more sophisticated records since
the notification of receipt of abstracts, the checking for "over submissions"
(e.g., more than two total), and, especially, the notification of results
would require personalized letters indicating which abstract one is
referring to. Given that, at least in the case of NELS, much of these
administrative tasks are the responsability of a few graduate student
volunteers, who must also reserve time for their own research, it
seems to us to not be an unreasonable compromise to require that authors
select their best work, be it solo or joint, for submission.
 For these reasons, we support the continued recognition of the right
of the Organizing Committee to decide on policies which they feel best
suit their own resources.
 We look forward to hearing the comments of other members of the
linguistic community regarding the "standardization" of the procedures
employed by conferences like NELS.
 Marc Authier & Lisa Reed, members
 NELS 23 Organizing Committee
 University of Ottawa
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Message 2: abstract submissions

Date: Thu, 6 May 1993 15:34:56 -abstract submissions
From: Judith Klavans <>
Subject: abstract submissions

Re Alex Monaghan's comment about gleeful conference organizers
ready to take your hundreds of pounds to hear the same old
recylced work: As one of the officials of the Association for
Computational Linguistics, you should be aware that conferences
are not money earners at all, and that we try hard to keep the
quality of the papers high over time. Perhaps what appears
to you as re-hashed work is subtlety improved in ways which
you do not appreciate. Further, I object to your
assumption that ours, or any other organization, is out for
financial gain, with no regard to quality.

I do agree that submissions should not be limited, or at
best limited to three, two joint and one sole. This is
especially important in CL where people tend to do a lot of
collaboration. It is less important for NELS where large
projects are rare. It is the job of the program committee
to review and decide, and should not be the problem of the

Judith Klavans
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