Self-Supervised and Controlled Multi-Document Opinion Summarization

Hady Elsahar, Maximin Coavoux, Matthias Gallé, Jos Rozen

We address the problem of unsupervised abstractive summarization of collections of user generated reviews with self-supervision and control. We propose a self-supervised setup that consider an individual document as a target summary for a set of similar documents. This setting makes training simpler than previous approaches by relying only on standard log-likelihood loss. We address the problem of hallucinations through the use of control codes, to steer the generation towards more coherent and relevant summaries.Finally, we extend the Transformer architecture to allow for multiple reviews as input. Our benchmarks on two datasets against graph-based and recent neural abstractive unsupervised models show that our proposed method generates summaries with a superior quality and relevance.This is confirmed in our human evaluation which focuses explicitly on the faithfulness of generated summaries We also provide an ablation study, which shows the importance of the control setup in controlling hallucinations and achieve high sentiment and topic alignment of the summaries with the input reviews.

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