Tamara Polajnar

I am a Postdoctoral Researcher working at the Unit for Natural Language Processing at DERI, Galway. I am working on various applications of lexical semantics to NLP tasks. My previous research experience is in Information Retrieval, working in the IR group at the University of Glasgow, with Leif Azzopardi and Richard Glassey on the PuppyIR project. This is a now completed EU project where several European IR groups collaborated on developing IR technologies for children. This project produced a freely available open source framework, which can be downloaded from SourceForge, as well as multiple demonstration systems. In particular, I developed a novel way for pre-school children to express their information needs, by using a picture dictionary. This was demonstrated in the application called JuSe, which allowed them to search YouTube for (moderated) cartoons.

Previously, I completed my PhD with Prof. Mark Girolami, in the Inference group at Glasgow. This group has since partially relocated to UCL. My topic was Biomedical text mining, specifically detection of protein-protein interaction sentences using kernel methods combined with semantic kernels.

Before that, I completed an MSc at the University of Edinburgh, in NLP and Cognitive Science, and I worked at the University of Sheffield, within the GATE group.