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Title: Graph-based approaches for semi-supervised and cross-domain sentiment analysis
Author: Ponomareva, Natalia
ISNI:       0000 0004 5355 0807
Awarding Body: University of Wolverhampton
Current Institution: University of Wolverhampton
Date of Award: 2014
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The rapid development of Internet technologies has resulted in a sharp increase in the number of Internet users who create content online. User-generated content often represents people's opinions, thoughts, speculations and sentiments and is a valuable source of information for companies, organisations and individual users. This has led to the emergence of the field of sentiment analysis, which deals with the automatic extraction and classification of sentiments expressed in texts. Sentiment analysis has been intensively researched over the last ten years, but there are still many issues to be addressed. One of the main problems is the lack of labelled data necessary to carry out precise supervised sentiment classification. In response, research has moved towards developing semi-supervised and cross-domain techniques. Semi-supervised approaches still need some labelled data and their effectiveness is largely determined by the amount of these data, whereas cross-domain approaches usually perform poorly if training data are very different from test data. The majority of research on sentiment classification deals with the binary classification problem, although for many practical applications this rather coarse sentiment scale is not sufficient. Therefore, it is crucial to design methods which are able to perform accurate multiclass sentiment classification. The aims of this thesis are to address the problem of limited availability of data in sentiment analysis and to advance research in semi-supervised and cross-domain approaches for sentiment classification, considering both binary and multiclass sentiment scales. We adopt graph-based learning as our main method and explore the most popular and widely used graph-based algorithm, label propagation. We investigate various ways of designing sentiment graphs and propose a new similarity measure which is unsupervised, easy to compute, does not require deep linguistic analysis and, most importantly, provides a good estimate for sentiment similarity as proved by intrinsic and extrinsic evaluations. The main contribution of this thesis is the development and evaluation of a graph-based sentiment analysis system that a) can cope with the challenges of limited data availability by using semi-supervised and cross-domain approaches b) is able to perform multiclass classification and c) achieves highly accurate results which are superior to those of most state-of-the-art semi-supervised and cross-domain systems. We systematically analyse and compare semi-supervised and cross-domain approaches in the graph-based framework and propose recommendations for selecting the most pertinent learning approach given the data available. Our recommendations are based on two domain characteristics, domain similarity and domain complexity, which were shown to have a significant impact on semi-supervised and cross-domain performance.
Supervisor: Thelwall, Mike Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: sentiment analysis ; semi-supervised learning ; cross-domain learning ; graph-based learning