Aspect-based Document Similarity for Research Papers


Abstract: Traditional document similarity measures provide a coarse-grained distinction between similar and dissimilar documents. Typically, they do not consider in what aspects two documents are similar. This limits the granularity of applications like recommender systems that rely on document similarity. In this paper, we extend similarity with aspect information by performing a pairwise document classification task. We evaluate our aspect-based document similarity for research papers. Paper citations indicate the aspect-based similarity, i.e., the section title in which a citation occurs acts as a label for the pair of citing and cited paper. We apply a series of Transformer models such as RoBERTa, ELECTRA, XLNet, and BERT variations and compare them to an LSTM baseline. We perform our experiments on two newly constructed datasets of 172,073 research paper pairs from the ACL Anthology and CORD-19 corpus. Our results show SciBERT is the best performing system. A qualitative examination validates our quantitative results. Our findings motivate future research of aspect-based document similarity and the development of a recommender system based on the evaluated techniques. We make our datasets, code, and trained models publicly available. Authors: Malte Ostendorff, Terry Ruas, Till Blume, Bela Gipp, Georg Rehm (German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence, University of Konstanz, University of Wuppertal, University of Kiel)