I wonder if you know how automatically obtain all the sub-concepts associated to a given concept. For example, given the concept car, I would like to automatically retrieve concepts such as: wheel, brake, window, seat belt, etc...

Of course, the way to do that could be using a taxonomy. However, this method does not satisfy my needs since: the taxonomies that I know only cover small domains, they are not homogeneously formatted, and it is not always clear that a given taxon is a real subsumption of the parent concept.

I am looking for a more general approach. Things that I have already tried:

  • Computing embeddings of the concept. It does not work.
  • Mining a corpus in search of hyponymy patterns. It does not work.
  • Looking for manually compiled theasurus which can offer this info. I could not find an appropriate one. Most of them offer: synonyms, antonyms, related words, but not real sub-concepts

Thank you very much in advance

  • Do you want something that works for concepts in a specific language, or something cross-linguistic?
    – michau
    Commented Dec 22, 2016 at 6:49
  • Just for a specific language.
    – Jorgemar
    Commented Dec 22, 2016 at 8:18
  • Which language?
    – michau
    Commented Dec 22, 2016 at 8:30
  • Well, preferably in English, or at least in a language which can be easily translated into English
    – Jorgemar
    Commented Dec 22, 2016 at 8:35

1 Answer 1


I think what you need is to look for Knowledge Bases (KBs). Among the most popular ones are DBPedia and YAGO, which are free to use. Each concept of the KB is related with other concepts in the KB. For instance, on the YAGO web-site, there is this example:

enter image description here

As you can see in the image, there are many concepts. The main concept investigated is Max Planck, which is a physicist, a physicist is a scientist, which is a person. Also, you have relation between the concept "Max Planck" and the concept "Nobel Prize", and the relation is hasWon, meaning that Max Planck has won a Nobel Prize. You can see there are many other concepts, like locations, temporal concepts, etc.

In order to get a better feeling of how these things work, I would suggest you play around with the OpenLink faceted browser with DBpedia. If you look for a concept, for instance - car, you can get all kinds of information about the concept and how it relates with other concepts.

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