Workshop on Language and Semantic Technology for Legal Domain

Collocated with RANLP 2015

10 September 2015

Hissar, Bulgaria


Legal domain has always been attractive to language and semantic technology because of its importance for the society with respect to globalization and common markets as well as for its challenges for formalization and specific language use. A series of workshops have been organized recently on the topic of NLP and legal domain. For example, JURIX (, JURISIN (, SPLeT: (, among others.

Legal practitioners are feeling increasingly overwhelmed with the expanding set of legislation and case law available these days, which is assuming more and more of an international character. For example, European legislation, which is estimated to be 170,000 pages long, of which over 100,000 pages have been produced in the last ten years. The European Union (EU) is aware of these difficulties and chose as one of its primary objectives to establish an integrated and standardized system of laws that applies in all member states. The achievement of harmonization is made complex by the fact that legislation is available in unstructured formats, which makes it difficult for users to cut through the information overload. As the law gets more complex, conflicting, and ever-changing, more advanced methodologies are required for analyzing, representing and reasoning on legal knowledge. Legal informatics is experiencing growth in activity, also at the industrial level. Several research projects aimed at designing platforms and web services for helping legal professionals to retrieve the information they are interested in have been approved recently by the EU commission and other institutions. Examples are Legivoc (, Openlaws (, EUCases (

The development of NLP techniques and semantic technologies for automatic analysis and indexing of big data freely available on the web has created opportunities for building new approaches to improve the efficiency, comprehensibility, and consistency of legal systems. Semantic analysis aims at relating syntactic elements – which could be phrases, clauses, sentences, paragraphs, and whole documents - to their meanings in a given domain, including meanings specific to legal information. On the one hand, in recent years the EU has delivered huge amounts of resources on EU law in many languages (such as, EuroParl, JRC, etc.). On the other hand, the matured NLP and Semantic Web technology provides a good inventory: for formalizing the law data in the form of domain ontologies; for automating the process of relevant knowledge extraction from legal documents; and for representing it in form of Linked Data in RDF. This will support a better search possibilities and a better presentation of the legal information to professional and non-professional stakeholders.

The aims of the workshop is to bring together researchers in the areas of NLP, semantic technologies, legal domain modeling and reasoning as well as practitioners in the area of legal data processing, publishing, etc. to present and discuss their recent developments in this interdisciplinary area. The topics of interest are as follows, but not limited to:

  • Ontological modeling of legal data
  • Legal reasoning
  • Language technologies for processing of legal texts
  • Adaptation of language processing modules to legal domain
  • Extraction of legal Named entities - legal citations, etc.
  • Legal search engines - requirements, implementations, etc.
  • Legislation and case law corpora in Linked Open Data

The workshop will be partially supported by the European project EUCases

Organizing Committee

Livio Robaldo, University of Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Kornél Markó, Averbis GmbH, Germany

Hristo Konstantinov, APIS, Bulgaria

A selection of the best papers of the workshop will be published at LNAI Springer Series jointly with AICOL VI follow-up activities.


Livio Robaldo, University of Luxembourg, Luxembourg,

Program Committee

Laura Alonso Alemany, National University of Córdoba, Argentina

Guido Boella, University of Turin, Italy

Elena Cabrio, INRIA Sophia Antipolis, France

Christian Cardellino, National University of Córdoba, Argentina

Luigi Di Caro, University of Turin, Italy

Loredana Cupi, University of Turin, Italy

Guido Governatori, NICTA Queensland, Australia

Davide Grossi, University of Liverpool, United Kindgom

Szymon Klarman, Brunel University London, United Kindgom

Beishui Liao, Zhejiang University, China

Marco Manna, University of Calabria, Italy

Martin Moguillansky, Universidad Nacional del Sur, Argentina

Monica Palmirani, University of Bologna, Italy

Martín Rezk, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy

Antonino Rotolo, University of Bologna, Italy

Clara Smith, National University of La Plata, Argentina

Leon van der Torre, University of Luxembourg, Luxembourg


Bartolini and Muthuri | An Ontology of the Forthcoming EU Regulation

Humphreys et al. | Classifying and Extracting Elements of Norms for Ontology Population using Semantic Role Labeling

EUCases | Introduction to EUCases

Schmedding et al. | EuroVoc-based Summarization of European Case Law

Simov et al. | A Multilingual Access Module to Legal Texts

Viber et al. | Aligning Legivoc Legal Vocabularies by Crowdsourcing