Violetta Cavalli Sforza

Invited Researcher of DEA Programme
Stay in France: from January 26 to February 28, 2019

Violetta Cavalli-Sforza holds two master's degrees in Civil Engineering (1981) and Computer Science (1985), Stanford University, and a Master's (1991) and Ph.D. (1998) degrees from the University of Pittsburgh.Intelligent Systems. Programmer meanwhile in the research laboratories of Digital Equipment Corporation (1985-1988) and researcher at Carnegie Mellon University (1994-1999, 2003-2007) in addition to teaching activities, research, consulting and industrial work, since 2008 she teaches at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane. She has been involved in several projects on languages and the automatic processing of natural language during her career. Her immediate interests include, among other things, new learning techniques and technologies.

The project 

Title: Wiktionary French-Arabic-Berber IT in social sciences and humanities

Keywords: Natural language processing, ontologies, linguistic variation in space and time, computer-supported learning (languages), information visualization in teaching and new learning techniques.

Selected publications

  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Saddiki, H., Naoual, N. (2018), “Arabic Readability Research: Current State and Future Directions”, Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Arabic Computational Linguistics (ACLing 2018), Dubai, United Arab Emirates, November 17-19 2018.
  • Nassiri N., Lakhouaja A., Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2018), “Construction d'un corpus arabe de textes scolaires”, Proceedings of the 3rd National Doctoral Symposium On Arabic Language Engineering (JDILA'2018), FSBM, Hassan II University of Casablanca, November 1.
  • Bouali, N., Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2018), “AUI Story Maker: Animation Generation from Natural Language”, Proceedings of Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED 2018), London, June 27.
  • Nassiri N., Lakhouaja A., Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2018), “Arabic Readability Assessment for Foreign Language Learners”, Proceedings of the International Conference on Natural Language & Information Systems (NLDB 2018), CNAM, Paris France, June 13-15, 2018.
  • Saddiki, H., Habash,N., Cavalli-Sforza,V., Al Khalil, M. (2018), “Feature Optimization for Predicting Readability of Arabic L1 and L2”, Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Natural Language Processing Techniques for Educational Applications (NLPTEA 2018), ACL 2018, Melbourne, Australia, July 19.
  • Saddiki, H., Cavalli-Sforza, V., & Bouzoubaa, K. (2017), Enhancing Visualization in Readability Reports for Arabic Texts, Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Arabic Computational Linguistics (ACLing 2017), Dubai, United Arab Emirates, November 5-6, 2017.
  • Nassiri, N., Lakhouaja, A. & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2017), “Modern Standard Arabic Readability Prediction”, Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Arabic Language Processing (ICALP 2017), Fez, Morocco, October 11-12.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Issar, A., Ouakrime, M., Agnaou, A., Darhmaoui, H. (2016), Tamazight E-Learning Platform: Leveraging Graph Databases for Flexible Design, Proceedings of Technologies d’Information et de Communication pour l’Amazighe  (TICAM 2016), Rabat, Morocco, November 28-29, 2016.
  • Saddiki, H., Bouzoubaa, K., & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2015), Text readability for Arabic as a foreign language, Proceedings of the 2015 IEEE/ACS 12th International Conference of Computer Systems and Applications (AICCSA), Marrakech, Morocco, November 17-20, 2015, pp. 1-8.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & El Mezouar, M. (2015).  Characterizing the Evolution of Arabic Learners’ Texts: A Mostly Lexical Perspective. Revue Asinag 9, Institut Royal de la Culture Amazighe, pp. 105-118.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., El Mezouar, M., Saddiki, H. (2014).  Matching an Arabic Text to a Learners’ Curriculum, Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Arabic Language, Oujda, Morocco, November 26-27, 2014.   
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Agoumi, I. (2014). Towards an Adaptive Platform for Supporting Language Learning Through Reading. Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies for Amazigh (TICAM 2014), Rabat, Morocco, November 24-25, 2014.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & El Mezouar, M. (2013). Vers un modèle pour le recueil d’un corpus d’apprentissage d’une langue étrangère peu dotée de ressources. Proceedings of La 2ème rencontre internationale La linguistique du corpus : recueil, annotation, exploitation et diffusion. Le Laboratoire de l’enseignement et d’aménagement de la langue amazighe (LAELA). Université Mouloud Mammeri de Tizi Ouzou, Algeria.  June 23-24, 2013, pp.23-42.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Saddiki, H., Bouzoubaa, K., Abouenour, L., Maamouri, M., & Goshey, E. (2013). Bootstrapping a WordNet for an Arabic Dialect from Other WordNets and Dictionary Resources. Proceedings of the 2013 ACS International Conference on Computer Systems and Applications (AICCSA 2013), Fes & Ifrane, Morocco, May 27-30, 2013.
  • Raiss, H. & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2012). ANMorph: Amazigh Nouns Morphological Analyzer. Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies for Amazigh (TICAM 2012), Rabat, Morocco, November 26-27, 2012.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Phillips, A. (2012). Using Morphology to Improve Example-Based Machine Translation: The Case of Arabic-to-English Translation. In Soudi, A., Farghaly, A., Neumann G., & Zbib, R.(eds.), Challenges for Arabic Empirical MT. John Benjamins Publishers, pp 23-48.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2012). Experiences in Problem-Based and Cooperative Learning. Proceeding of the 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation (ICERI2012), Madrid, Spain, November 19-21, 2012.
  • Smith, K. & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2012). Objective Assessment of Undergraduate Computer Science. Proceeding of the 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation (ICERI2012), Madrid, Spain, November 19-21, 2012.
  • Smith, K., Cavalli-Sforza, V., Rinehart, D., Sendide, K., (2012). Developing an Undergraduate Research Program at a small public university in Morocco. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies (EDULEARN 2012), Barcelona, July 02, 2012-July 04, 2012.
  • Maamouri, M., Zaghouani, W., Cavalli-Sforza, V., Graff, D., & Ciul, M. (2012). Developing ARET: An NLP-based Educational Tool Set for Arabic Reading Enhancement.  Proceedings of The 7th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications (NAACL-HLT-2012), Montreal, Canada, June 7, 2012, pp. 127-135.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Chekayri, A. (2011). Computer-based Tools for Learning to Read: The Case of Arabic. (Outils numériques dans l’apprentissage de la lecture : le cas de la langue arabe.) Proceedings of Le Colloque International L’Environnement Numérique dans l’Enseignement des Langues (ENDEL 2011). La Faculté des Sciences Dhar El Mahraz Fès, Université Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah, 29-30 novembre, 2011, pp. 89-108.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Rehioui, H. & Bahri, L. (2011). A Tool for Annotating Texts with Morphological and Syntactic Information. In Proceedings of 4ème atelier international sur l’Amazighe et les Nouvelles Technologies sous le thème: Les Ressources Langagières: Construction et Exploitation (NTIC-2011), Institut Royal de la Culture Amazighe, Rabat, Morocco, 24-25 February, 2011, pp. 249-259.
  • Smith, K., Darhmaoui, H., Loudiyi, K., Berrada, F., Berrado, A., Cavalli-Sforza, V., El Asli, A., Legrouri, A., Messaoudi, F., Ouardaoui, A., Sendide, K. (2009). CITI: Experience in introducing ICT into Middle School education in Morocco.  International Conference, Interactive Computer Aided Learning (ICL2009), September 23 -25, 2009 Villach, Austria.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Soudi A. (2007). Arabic Computational Morphology: A Tradeoff between Multiple-Operations and Multiple-Stems. In Soudi, A., van den Bosch, A., and Neumann, G., editors, Arabic Computational Morphology: Knowledge-based and Empirical Methods. Kluwer/Springer's series on Text, Speech and Language Technology.
  • McCord, M. & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2007). An Arabic Slot Grammar Parser.  In Proceedings of the Workshop on Computational Approaches to Semitic Languages, Conference of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL 2007), Prague, Czech Republic, June 28-29.
  • Phillips, A., Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Brown, R.D. (2007). Improving Example Based Machine Translation Through Morphological Generalization and Adaptation. Machine Translation Summit XI, Copenhagen, Denmark, September 10-14, 2007, pp. 369-375.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Soudi A. (2006). IMORPHĒ: An Inheritance and Equivalence Based Morphology Description Compiler. In Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC 2006), Genova, Italy, May 22-28, pp. 13-18.
  • Phillips, A. & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2006). Arabic-to-English Example Based Machine Translation Using Context-Insensitive Morphological Analysis. In Proceedings of Journée d'Etudes sur le Traitement Automatique de la Langue Arabe (JETALA).  Institut d'Etudes et de Recherches pour l'Arabisation, June 5-6, Rabat Morocco, pp. 9-19.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. & Maamouri, M. (2005). Extensions to a Histogram-Based Student Modeling Approach to  Facilitate Reading in Morphologically Complex Languages. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Student Modeling for Language Tutors, Twelfth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, July 19.
  • Su, S., Fortes, J.A.B., Kasad, T.R., Patil, M., Matsunaga, A., Tsugawa, M., Cavalli-Sforza, V., Carbonell, J., Jansen, P., Ward, W., Cole, R., Towsley, D., Chen, W., Antón, A.I., He, Q., McSweeney, C., de Brens, L., Ventura, J., Taveras, P., Connolly, R., Ortega, C., Piñeres, B., Brooks, O., Murillo, G.A., & Herrera, M. (2005). Transnational Information Sharing, Event Notification, Rule Enforcement and Process Coordination. International Journal of Electronic Government Research, 1(2), April-June, Idea-Group Publishing, pp. 1-26.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Carbonell, J.G., and Jansen P.J.J. (2004). Developing Language Resources for Transnational Digital Government Systems: A Case Study. In Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC 2004), Lisbon, Portugal, May 24-30, pp. 945-948 (Vol III).
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Brown, R.D., Carbonell, J.G., Jansen, P.J., and Kim, J.D. (2004). Challenges in Using an Example-Based MT System for A Transnational Digital Government Project. In Proceedings of the Ninth Workshop of the European Association for Machine Translation (EAMT-04), University of Malta, April 26-27, pp. 33-42.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. et al. (2003). Enabling Transnational Collection, Notification, and Sharing of Information.  In Proceedings of the 2003 National Conference on Digital Government Research, Boston, MA, May 18-21, pp. 1-4.  (
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. and Soudi A. (2003). Enhancements to a Morphological Generator to Capture Arabic Morphology. In Proceedings of the Eighth International Symposium on Social Communication, Center of Applied Linguistics, Santiago de Cuba, January 20-24, pp. 565-570.   
  • Soudi, A., Cavalli-Sforza, V., & Jamari, A. (2002). A Prototype English-to-Arabic Interlingua-based MT System,” In Proceedings of the Workshop on Arabic Language Resources and Evaluation – Status and Prospects, Third International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC 2002), Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain, Jun 1. (
  • Soudi, A., Cavalli-Sforza, V., & Jamari, A. (2001). A Computational Lexeme-Based Treatment of Arabic Morphology. In Proceedings of the Arabic Natural Language Processing Workshop, Conference of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL 2001), Toulouse, France, July 6, pp. 155-162.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Czuba, K., Mitamura, T., and Nyberg, E. (2000). Challenges in Adapting an Interlingua for Bidirectional English-Italian Translation. In Proceedings of the 4th Conference of the Association for Machine Translation in the Americas (AMTA 2000), Cuernavaca, Mexico, October 11-14.  Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence 1934, Springer, Berlin, pp. 169-178. 
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Soudi, A., & Mitamura, T. (2000). Arabic Morphology Generation Using a Concatenative Strategy. In Proceedings of the 1st Meeting of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (NAACL 2000), Seattle, Apr-May, pp. 86-93.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. (2000). The Impact of Representation on Coaching Argument Analysis. In Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS 2000), Montreal, Canada, June.  Lecture Notes in Computer Science 1839, Berlin:Springer, pp. 413-422.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. (1999). Constructed vs. Received Representations for Scientific Argument: Implications for Learning and Coaching. In Proceedings of The Twenty-First Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Vancouver, Canada, August 19-21, pp. 108-113.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V. (1998). Constructed vs. Received Graphical Representations For Learning About Scientific Controversy: Implications For Learning And Coaching. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh, Intelligent Systems Program, Apr.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., & Lesgold, A. M. (1995). Intelligent Learning By Doing Tools for Technical and Dialectical Knowledge. S. Bagnara, C. Zucchermaglio, S. Stucky (Eds.), Organizational Learning and Technological Change, Berlin: Springer-Verlag (NATO ASI Series).
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Weiner, A.W., & Lesgold, A.M. (1994). Software Support for Students Engaging in Scientific Activity and Scientific Controversy. Science Education 78(6), Nov, pp. 577-599.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Moore, J. D., Suthers, D. D. (1993). Helping Students Articulate and Criticize Scientific Explanations. In Proceedings of the World Conference on AI and Education (AIED-93), Edinburgh, Scotland, Aug 23-27, pp. 113-120.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., Lesgold, A.M., & Weiner, A.W. (1992). Strategies for Contributing to Collaborative Arguments. In Proceedings of the Fourteenth Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Bloomington, IN, Jul 29-Aug 1, pp. 755-760.
  • Kalsow B., & Cavalli-Sforza, V. (1988). Pickles: An Implementation of Persistent Data Structures.  Research Report 29, Digital Equipment Corporation Systems Research Center, Nov.
  • Cavalli-Sforza, V., and Ortolano, L. (1984). Delphi Forecasts of Land Use: Transportation Interactions. Journal of Transportation Engineering 110(3), ASCE, May, pp. 324-339.