Denis Emelin

Denis Emelin

PhD Candidate / Post-Graduate Researcher in Informatics

University of Edinburgh, ILCC

Hello! I currently pursue a PhD at the University of Edinburgh, where I’m advised by Dr. Rico Sennrich and Dr. Ivan Titov. My research aims to explore and improve the extent of language understanding in neural machine translation.

Our work has demonstrated that NMT models rely on shallow heuristics when inferring the right sense of ambiguous words, and improved the ability of transformer models to represent lexical and contextual information. Related phenomena, such as co-reference resolution, discourse processing, and translation of figurative language are also among my varied research interests.

Recently, I completed an internship with the MOSAIC group at the Allen Institute of Artificial Intelligence, where I investigated commonsense reasoning abilities of state-of-the-art models of language.

In my spare time, I enjoy climbing, learning new things, and caring for my future orchard.


  • Machine translation and multilingual technologies
  • Grounded natural language understanding
  • Natural language generation
  • Commonsense, social, and moral reasoning
  • Interpretability and model bias


  • PhD Informatics, 2021

    University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

  • MSc Language Science & Technology, 2017

    Saarland University, Germany

  • BA German Studies (Linguistics Focus)

    University of Tübingen, Germany