Dr. Nan Duan (段楠) joins the Natural Language Computing (NLC) group at Microsoft Research Asia from Feb. 2012. He received his Ph.D. from Tianjin University, supervised by Dr. Ming Zhou. His research interests include open domain question answering, semantic parsing, paraphrasing, knowledge mining, statistical machine translation, and their applications in building various artificial intelligence engines, such as Microsoft Xiaoice.



#: Students I mentored/collaborated in MSRA.


  • Zhao Yan#, Nan Duan, Junwei Bao, Peng Chen, Ming Zhou, Zhoujun Li, Jianshe Zhou, “DocChat: An Information Retrieval Approach for Chatbot Engines Using Unstructured Documents“, ACL, 2016.


  • Pengcheng Yin#, Nan Duan, Ben Kao, Junwei Bao, Ming Zhou, “Answering Questions with Complex Semantic Constraints on Open Knowledge Bases“, CIKM, 2015.


  • Min-Chul Yang#, Nan Duan, Ming Zhou, Hae-Chang Rim, “Joint Relational Embeddings for Knowledge-based Question Answering“, EMNLP, 2014.
  • Junwei Bao#, Nan Duan, Ming Zhou, Tiejun Zhao, “Knowledge-based Question Answering as Machine Translation”, ACL, 2014.


  • 段楠, “从图谱搜索看搜索技术的发展趋势”, 《中国计算机学会通讯》, 2013.
  • Nan Duan, “Minimum Bayes Risk based Answer Re-ranking for Question Answering”, ACL, 2013.
  • Chenguang Wang#, Nan Duan, Ming Zhou, Ming Zhang, “Paraphrasing Adaptation for Web Search Ranking”, ACL, 2013.
  • Hong Sun#, Nan Duan, Yajuan Duan, Ming Zhou, “Answer Extraction from Passage Graph for Factoid Question Answering”, IJCAI, 2013.


  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Ming Zhou, “Forced Derivation Tree based Model Training to Statistical Machine Translation”, EMNLP, 2012.
  • Nan Duan, “Consensus Decoding to Statistical Machine Translation“, Ph.D. thesis. (Chinese)


  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Ming Zhou, “Improving Phrase Extraction via MBR Phrase Scoring and Pruning”, MT Summit XIII, 2011.
  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Ming Zhou, “A Comparative Analysis of Consensus Decoding Methods for Statistical Machine Translation”, Journal of Chinese Information Processing, 2011. (Chinese)
  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Ming Zhou, “Hypothesis Mixture Decoding for Statistical Machine Translation”, ACL, 2011.


  • Chi-Ho Li, Nan Duan, Yinggong Zhao, Shujie Liu, Lei Cui, Mei-yuh Hwang, Amittai Axelrod, Jianfeng Gao, Yaodong Zhang, Li Deng, “The MSRA Machine Translation System for IWSLT 2010”, IWSLT, 2010.
  • Nan Duan, Hong Sun, Ming Zhou, “Translation Model Generalization using Probability Averaging for Machine Translation”, COLING, 2010.
  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Dongdong Zhang, Ming Zhou, “Mixture Model-based Minimum Bayes Risk Decoding using Multiple Machine Translation Systems“, COLING, 2010.


  • Nan Duan, Mu Li, Tong Xiao, Ming Zhou, “The Feature Subspace Method for SMT System Combination”, EMNLP, 2009.
  • Mu Li, Nan Duan, Dongdong Zhang, Chi-Ho Li, Ming Zhou, “Collaborative Decoding: Partial Hypothesis Re-ranking using Translation Consensus between Decoders”, ACL, 2009.
  • Dongdong Zhang, Chi-Ho Li, Nan Duan, Shujie Liu, Mu Li, Ming Zhou, “MSRA Technical Report for the 5th China Workshop on Machine Translation“, in CWMT, 2009.


  • Dongdong Zhang, Mu Li, Nan Duan, Chi-Ho Li, Ming Zhou, “Measure Word Generation for English-Chinese SMT Systems”, ACL, 2008.