André Martins from IT in Lisbon is among the restrict list of eight Portuguese researchers who will receive a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant.
Only available to top researchers whose work is considered disruptive and with a great impact, the ERC grants are justifiably one of the most coveted within the scientific world, with starting grants going up to €1,5 million. The €1,442 million grant will fund André Martins 5-year research project DeepSPIN - Deep Structured Prediction in Natural Language Processing”, starting in 2018.
André explained us that “Deep learning is revolutionizing the field of Natural Language Processing (NLP), with breakthroughs in machine translation, speech recognition, and question answering. New language interfaces (digital assistants, messenger apps, and customer service bots) are emerging as the next technologies for seamless, multilingual communication among humans and machines. However, deep neural networks are currently missing the key structural mechanisms for solving complex real-world tasks requiring deep reasoning”. According to André, the concept underlying the project is “a new generation of machine learning models, methods, and algorithms that consider the structure of natural language to solve these challenging tasks.”
The project will be hosted by IT and the work will be developed in collaboration with Unbabel, a start-up translation company where André is a Main Researcher. On his page (https://andre-martins.github.io/pages/jobs.html) André has already announced that he is looking for 3 Post-doc and 3 PhD students in Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing.