Taxonomy is a hierarchically structured knowledge graph that plays a crucial role in machine intelligence. The taxonomy expansion task aims to find a position for a new term in an existing taxonomy to capture the emerging knowledge in the world and keep the taxonomy dynamically updated. Previous taxonomy expansion solutions neglect valuable information brought by the hierarchical structure and evaluate the correctness of merely an added edge, which downgrade the problem to node-pair scoring or mini-path classification. In this paper, we propose the Hierarchy Expansion Framework (HEF), which fully exploits the hierarchical structure’s properties to maximize the coherence of expanded taxonomy. HEF makes use of taxonomy’s hierarchical structure in multiple aspects: i) HEF utilizes subtrees containing most relevant nodes as self-supervision data for a complete comparison of parental and sibling relations; ii) HEF adopts a coherence modeling module to evaluate the coherence of a taxonomy’s subtree by integrating hypernymy relation detection and several tree-exclusive features; iii) HEF introduces the Fitting Score for position selection, which explicitly evaluates both path and level selections and takes full advantage of parental relations to interchange information for disambiguation and self-correction. Extensive experiments show that by better exploiting the hierarchical structure and optimizing taxonomy’s coherence, HEF vastly surpasses the prior state-of-the-art on three benchmark datasets by an average improvement of 46.7% in accuracy and 32.3% in mean reciprocal rank.

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