Key Info

Basic Information

Prof. Dr. Hermann Ney
Faculty / Institution:
Mathematics, Computer Science and Natural Sciences
Industrial Leadership
Project duration:
01.02.2015 to 31.01.2018
EU contribution:
3.977.428 euros
  EU flag This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 645452.  


QT21: Quality Translation 21


A European Digital Single Market free of barriers, including language barriers, is a stated EU objective to be achieved by 2020. The findings of the META-NET Language White Papers show that currently only 3 of the EU-27 languages enjoy moderate to good support by our machine translation technologies, with either weak (at best fragmentary) or no support for the vast majority of the EU-27 languages. This lack is a key obstacle impeding the free flow of people, information and trade in the European Digital Single Market. Many of the languages not supported by our current technologies show common traits: they are morphologically complex, with free and diverse word order. Often there are not enough training resources and/or processing tools. Together this results in drastic drops in translation quality. The combined challenges of linguistic phenomena and resource scenarios have created a large and under-explored grey area in the language technology map of European languages. Combining support from key stakeholders, QT21 addresses this grey area developing (1) substantially improved statistical and machine-learning based translation models for challenging languages and resource scenarios, (2) improved evaluation and continuous learning from mistakes, guided by a systematic analysis of quality barriers, informed by human translators, (3) all with a strong focus on scalability, to ensure that learning and decoding with these models is efficient and that reliance on data (annotated or not) is minimised.


  • Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, Germany (Coordinator)
  • Universiteit van Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Dublin City University, Ireland
  • The University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • Karlsruher Institut für Technologie, Germany
  • Centre national de la recherche scientifique CNRS, France
  • Univerzita Karlova, Czechia
  • Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Italy
  • The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
  • TAUS B.V., Netherlands
  • text & form GmbH, Germany
  • Tilde SIA, Latvia
  • Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong