Answering Ambiguous Questions through Generative Evidence Fusion and Round-Trip Prediction

Yifan Gao, Henghui Zhu, Patrick Ng, Cicero Nogueira dos santos, Zhiguo Wang, Feng Nan, Dejiao Zhang, Ramesh Nallapati, Andrew O. Arnold, Bing Xiang

In open-domain question answering, questions are highly likely to be ambiguous because users may not know the scope of relevant topics when formulating them. Therefore, a system needs to find every possible interpretation of the question, and propose a set of disambiguated question-answer pairs. In this paper, we present a model that aggregates and combines evidence from multiple passages to generate question-answer pairs. Particularly, our model reads a large number of passages to find as many interpretations as possible. In addition, we propose a novel round-trip prediction approach to generate additional interpretations that our model fails to find in the first pass, and then verify and filter out the incorrect question-answer pairs to arrive at the final disambiguated output. On the recently introduced AmbigQA open-domain question answering dataset, our model, named Refuel, achieves a new state-of-the-art, outperforming the previous best model by a large margin. We also conduct comprehensive analyses to validate the effectiveness of our proposed round-trip prediction.

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