Novelis ranks France 2nd in the world in an international research challenge on natural language processing.

One more step towards the democratization of Artificial Intelligence and NLP (Natural Language Processing)


Paris, March 25, 2021 – Novelis, an innovative consulting and technology company, is currently running in two international research challenges aimed at generating SQL queries automatically using natural language. Following the recent publication of its work, Novelis is positioned alongside leaders in Artificial Intelligence such as Microsoft, Salesforce, Google and many others.


The volume of data processed daily in the world has never been so important and these data are mostly gathered in so-called relational databases on which mastering a Structured Query Language SQL is required to store or manipulate the data in question. The goal of Novelis’ research work is to democratize access to these data by automatically generating these technically complex queries from human language, also known as Natural Language Processing (NLP).


Novelis runs in 2 major international challenges: SPIDER and WikiSQL


The Spider challenge, led by Yale University, brings together a large-scale complex cross-domain semantic data set and SQL queries. The goal of Spider is to transform natural English text into executable SQL queries (this task is known by its name “Text-to-SQL task”). This challenge consists of 10,181 questions, 5,693 unique complex SQL queries on 200 databases with multiple tables covering 138 different domains. Following the publication of its work, Novelis is ranked 2nd worldwide, alongside SalesForce, only 2.9 points behind the first (Tel-Aviv University & Allen Institute for AI). Learn more and see the results: Spider: Yale Semantic Parsing and Text-to-SQL Challenge (yale-lily.github.io)

The objective of the WikiSQL challenge is the same as for Spider but with different constraints and contexts. We will only deal with one table from models with unsupervised learning (where the machine works on its own) or with supervised learning (where the machine relies on annotations from which it generates predictions). Leading companies in Artificial Intelligence and NLP are participating in this challenge along with the largest universities: Microsoft, Google, Alibaba and Salesforce, the universities of California, Berkeley, Fudan… As part of its work, Novelis has developed a hybrid learning model that ranks 7th out of 31 scientific works. Learn more and discover the results: GitHub – salesforce/WikiSQL: A large annotated semantic parsing corpus for developing natural language interfaces.


Novelis has made innovation and R&D a strategic priority in its development


Since its creation, Novelis has chosen to invest massively (30% of its turnover) in research and development. For Mehdi Nafe, CEO of Novelis, “Beyond the impact on fundamental research, our aim is to change the software design model to achieve operational excellence, change the relationship with technologies and have a sustainable impact on innovation processes in society. The major advances of recent years in data science, AI and, more recently, NLP, represent a huge potential in terms of business process optimization and use. The creation of an R&D Lab is one of the founding acts of Novelis. As a technology company, engaging in research is a key and essential element for us to better serve our customers. “