Institute of Language and Speech Processing (ILSP)

ILSP acts as a leading R&D organization in Greece and pursues excellence in research, development and innovation in the fields of language, interaction, knowledge and content technologies. It delivers innovative applications & solutions in a wide range of sectors with a particular focus on creative industries, human learning, tourism and cultural heritage.

ILSP brings together experts from a broad range of related disciplines, such as computational linguistics, machine learning, signal processing, computer science, statistics, psycholinguistics, cognitive sciences, humanities and physics and has created the necessary technical infrastructure and a collaborative interdisciplinary framework enabling it to carry out basic and applied research in the following areas:

  • natural language processing: computational models for natural language interaction; design, implementation and integration of human language technologies in systems and applications dealing with structured and unstructured data processing. Applications include language-aware information retrieval and extraction, natural language interfaces, multilingual text processing, translation technologies, text analytics, knowledge management, etc.
  • speech technologies: speech signal processing and technologies to be used in speech-enabled applications. Research and technological development for text-to-speech synthesis, dictation, spontaneous speech recognition, emotional speech analysis and speaker indexing and recognition.
  • natural interaction and embodied communication: research on oral language and its communicational, nonverbal-modality constituents (gestures, facial expressions, paralanguage, etc.) as well as on Sign Language; methodologies and tools for linguistic analysis, resource creation and curation, specific applications in the framework of “Design for All” principles; assistive technologies and implementations for sign language communication.
  • intelligent systems and multimedia: intelligent integrating of devices, data, information and media content, while placing people in the loop, in demanding everyday application settings; systems and solutions that can make extensive use of computational intelligence, smart human- machine interfaces, algorithms for data processing and mining, multimedia and content processing technologies.  
  • learning technologies: innovative e-learning environments that use state-of-the-art approaches and methods such as language technologies, intelligent tutoring systems, learning analytics, educational data mining, educational games, student modelling, cognition and assessment methods. The main domains of applications are language learning as well as digital and professional skills development.
  • cultural technologies: interdisciplinary research in the fields of cultural heritage and heritage science and technology. Key fields involved are archaeology, natural/physical sciences and computer engineering, leading to technological results that are applied to the investigation, interpretation, conservation, access, management and promotion of culture in general as well as cultural artefacts in particular.
  • language resources infrastructures: creation of language resources for Greek, (annotated monolingual/multilingual text/speech/signs corpora and tools, lexical and conceptual resources - ontologies, semantic lexica, etc.); design of language resource specifications, design and implementation of language resource models, environments and tools, metadata and archives. 

Achievement: Facts and Figures


  • has participated in more than 250 national, regional and European R&D projects
  • has collaborated with more than 600 enterprises and organisations
  • has reached end-user product sales (software, books, etc) exceeding 40.000 pcs
  • streams research results and technological knowhow through 4 spin-off companies
  • offers a bundle of free or license-based off- and online B2B and B2C services that also power third party systems and applications
  • is involved in 2 graduate education programmes (Language Technologies, Quality Journalism and New Technologies)


  • Secure and expand the technological readiness of the Greek Language so that it may equally stand among other languages in the digital era

  • Create a complete range of digital tools that will open new perspectives and novel applications to support and enhance the study of Cultural Heritage
  • Allow the above tools and achievements to be so deployed that they have a significant impact in supporting local, regional and national businesses to create innovative products and services

Achievements: Systems, tools and products

ILSP has demonstrated significant results in developing production-quality products, software and resources as evidenced by the following:

  • A large number of innovative language tools and platforms
  • A wide range of language resources and the related infrastructure
  • A noteworthy expansion into -other than language- semiotic systems
  • Incorporating language tools and resources into key educational and assistive applications to facilitate integration of underprivileged populations into Greek society
  • A large number of tools and applications for the sectors of cultural heritage and tourism
  • An active involvement in the industrial ecosystem by developing intelligent systems applications solutions and establishing spin-off companies exploiting technological outcomes with a strong potential in dynamic markets
  • An active presence in the Balkans, Europe and worldwide with technological advancements for the Greek language and Greek cultural heritage
  • establish a comprehensive language infrastructure comprising appropriately documented datasets and processing tools for Greek,
  • work on the interface between Greek and the other major languages of,
  • develop highly innovative language and semiotic technologies with a significant impact on human-machine interaction and content analysis,
  • develop methods and tools for knowledge extraction from content in a variety of contextual settings and application sectors,
  • develop methods and technologies for the investigation, interpretation, conservation, access, management and promotion of cultural heritage artefacts, monuments, sites and collections
  • develop innovative solutions for delivering technology-enhanced learning solutions for different applications (language learning, vocational training, assessment)


The Institute for Language and Speech Processing (ILSP) is a leading R&D organization in Greece and a centre of excellence for research, development and innovation in the fields of language, interaction, content, culture and learning technologies. 
Its onset goes back to 1985 with the setting up of a small team of linguists and information technologists who worked on the EUROTRA machine translation project. Gradually the team expanded both in the number of people and in the range of activities. In 1991 it was established as a Research Institute under the auspices of the General Secretariat for Research and Technology (GSRT), Ministry of Development. In 2003, ILSP joined the newly established “Athena” Research and Innovation Center in Information, Communication and Knowledge Technologies (“Athena” RC). At the same time the Cultural and Educational Technology Institute (CETI) also joined “Athena” RC. CETI had been founded in Xanthi in 1998 as an independent research institute under the auspices of the GSRT with research and technological activities in the sectors of culture and education. In March 2012 CETI was merged into ILSP.

ILSP has become a pole of attraction not only for highly qualified scientists and students wishing to work in the fields of language, interaction, knowledge and content technologies, but also for the dynamic Greek and European private sector in information technologies. The experience of its researchers, the close relation it holds with key Research Centres abroad and its industrial orientation are the main ingredients of its distinctive profile at the national and international level. 

The continuous effort of improving the quality of the work performed at ILSP has led to its certification of its research activities together with the products and services it provides according to the requirements set by the ISO 9001:2008 quality standards for project management, software development, educational software platforms development, and the provision of 3D digitization services.

To complement and support its research efforts in these areas, ILSP continuously invests in its hardware and software supporting infrastructures as well as its human capital.

Unique characteristics and advantages

ILSP has long established itself as a centre of excellence in conducting interdisciplinary research in all aspects of the Language Technologies spectrum. Following the merger with CETI, ILSP has expanded its research activities into the field of cultural technologies and heritage sciences and strengthened its offerings in learning technologies. Over the years, the accumulated research experience enabled ILSP to develop a competitive edge in the fields of language, interaction, knowledge and content technologies, serving a wide range of application sectors, with particular edge in creative industries, learning and culture

It encourages collaboration among researchers of different subject areas, targeting fundamental and applied research programmes, developing innovative solutions and integrating prototypes that address real-world challenges.