BioLaySumm 2023 - Shared Task @ BioNLP 2023


NaCTeM members Sophia Ananiadou, Paul Thompson, Qianqian Xie and Zheheng Luo are among the co-organisers of BioLaySum 2023, a shared task on lay summarization of biomedical research articles, organised as part of the BioNLP Workshop at ACL 2023, to be held in Toronto, Canada on 13 July 2023


Biomedical publications contain the latest research on prominent health-related topics, ranging from common illnesses to global pandemics. This can often result in their content being of interest to a wide variety of audiences including researchers, medical professionals, journalists, and even members of the public. However, the highly technical and specialist language used within such articles typically make it difficult for non-expert audiences to understand their contents.

Abstractive summarization models can be used to generate a concise summary of an article, capturing its salient point using words and sentences that are not used in the original text. As such, these models have the potential to help broaden access to highly technical documents when trained to generate summaries that are more readable, containing more background information and less technical terminology (i.e., a "lay summary").

This shared task surrounds the abstractive summarization of biomedical articles, with an emphasis on controllability and catering to non-expert audiences. Through this task, we aim to help foster increased research interest in controllable summarization that helps broaden access to technical texts and progress toward more usable abstractive summarization models in the biomedical domain.

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