Robust ReadingCompetition

Contact - ICDAR2017 Competition on Multi-lingual scene text detection and script identification

Scientific Advisory Committee

Jean-Christophe Burie
Cheng-lin Liu
Jean-Marc Ogier

Organizing Committee

Imen Bizid
Joseph Chazalon
Hyunsoo Choi
Yuan Feng
Dimosthenis Karatzas
Wafa Khlif
Zhenbo Luo
Muhammad Muzzamil Luqman
Nibal Nayef (*Main organizer)
Umapada Pal
Christophe Rigaud
Fei Yin

Collaborators' Acknowledgment (Dataset Collection and Annotation)

To Be Announced Soon :)


(** All names in alphabetical order according to last name)


Biographical Notes

A brief bio of each member of the scientific committee and organizing committee is given below:

Jean-Christophe BURIE received his Ph.D. degree in Automatic Control Engineering and Industrial Data Processing from University of Lille, France, in 1995. He was a research fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering for Computer-Controlled Machinery, Osaka University, Japan from 1995 to 1997 in the framework of the Lavoisier Program of the French Foreign Office. He works at La Rochelle University since 1998. He is currently full Professor and deputy director of the L3i Lab, and vice- president of the University of La Rochelle. He has been involved in the European Project EUREKA- Prometheus and has actively contributed to the ANR projects: Navidomass and Alpage. His research interests include computer vision, color image processing, pattern recognition. His research topics concerns color document analysis indexing of Comics, characters recognition written on old palm leaves. Since 2011, he is co-leader of the e-bdtheque research program dedicated to the indexing of comics’ books. He has actively participated, recently, in the organization of SmartDoc competition for ICDAR 2015, AMADI competition for ICFHR 2016 and SSGCI competition for ICPR 2016.

Cheng-lin Liu is a Professor at the National Laboratory of Pattern Recognition (NLPR), Institute of Automation of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, and is now the director of the laboratory. He received the B.S. degree in electronic engineering from Wuhan University, Wuhan, China, the M.E. degree in electronic engineering from Beijing Polytechnic University, Beijing, China, the Ph.D. degree in pattern recognition and intelligent control from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, in 1989, 1992 and 1995, respectively. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and later at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology from March 1996 to March 1999. From 1999 to 2004, he was a research staff member and later a senior researcher at the Central Research Laboratory, Hitachi, Ltd., Tokyo, Japan. His research interests include pattern recognition, image processing, neural networks, machine learning, and especially the applications to character recognition and document analysis. He has published over 200 technical papers at prestigious international journals and conferences. He won the IAPR/ICDAR Young Investigator Award of 2005. He serves on the editorial board of Pattern Recognition Journal, Image and Vision and Computing, International Journal on Document Analysis and Recognition, and Cognitive Computation. He is a fellow of the IAPR and the IEEE. He served as the general chair, program chair or executive chair of ICDAR2011, ACPR (2011, 2013, 2015), GbR2015, ICFHR2016, CCPR (2008, 2012, 2014). He organized competitions of Chinese handwriting recognition at CCPR2010, ICDAR2011 and ICDAR2013.

Jean-Marc OGIER (Professor) received his PhD degree in computer science from University of Rouen, France, in 1994. During this period (1991-1994), he worked on graphic recognition for Matra Ms&I Company. Full professor at University of La Rochelle, Pr Ogier is the head of L3i laboratory which gathers more than 120 members and works mainly of Document Analysis and Content Management. Author of more than 160 publications / communications in international conferences and journals, he managed several French and European projects dealing with historical document analysis, either with public institutions, or with private companies. Pr Ogier was Deputy Director of the GDR I3 of the French National Research Centre (CNRS) between 2005 and 2013 (800 members). He was also Chair of the Technical Committee 10 (Graphic Recognition) of the International Association for Pattern Recognition (IAPR) from 2010 to 2015, and is the representative member of France at the governing board of the IAPR, serving as a member of the international liaison committee. Jean-Marc Ogier has been the general chair of the program chair of several international scientific events dealing with document analysis (DAS, ICDAR, GREC, ...) and serves on the Editorial Board of several international journals : IJDAR (International Journal in Document Analysis and Recognition), ELCVIA, (Electronic Letter on Computer Vision and Image Analysis). Jean-Marc Ogier has created the association VALCONUM (, the aim of which is to create an «academico-industrial» ecosystem allowing to develop European competitiveness for both its academic and industrial members. He has been serving as the President of the University of La Rochelle since 2016.

Imen Bizid is currently a Temporary Lecturer and Research Assistant in the University of La Rochelle (France). She recently got a PhD in Computer Science at the University of La Rochelle (France) and the University of Tunis (Tunisia), supervised by Prof. Patrice Boursier and Prof. Sami Faiz. She is interested in how computer science can support emergency responders and has oriented her research on projects exploring novel technologies and popular social platforms to retrieve relevant and exclusive information during unexpected disasters. Her past work has focused on the integration of heterogeneous spatial databases for disaster management. The goal of her work consists in identifying and tracking the most prominent social networks users who are susceptible to share relevant and fresh information during a specific unexpected disaster. Her research focuses on exploring various technologies mainly multi-agent systems, centrality measures and machine learning techniques. She has published several peer-reviewed papers in reputed international conferences and workshops such as CIKM, ASONAM, ISCRAM

Joseph Chazalon received M.Sc.,engineer and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the Institut National des Sciences Appliquées (INSA) in Rennes (France) in 2008 and 2013. He currently is a research engineer at the L3i laboratory at the University of La Rochelle, France. His major research interests include visual languages, documents image processing, mobile document image acquisition, content based image retrieval and performance evaluation. He is a regular reviewer for major document analysis and recognition (DAR) conferences. His was a contributor to the previous SmartDoc challenges and datasets.

Hyunsoo Choi (Samsung Electronics Digital Media & Communication R&D Center). Hyunsoo Choi received BS, MS, and PhD degree in Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea, in 2004, 2006, and 2011, respectively.He is a Senior Engineer in Samsung Electronics Digital Media & Communication R&D Center.His current research interests include image processing, scene text recognition, object recognition with Deep Neural Network.

Yuan Feng is an Engineer at the National Laboratory of Pattern Recognition(NLPR), Institute of Automation of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China. Her current research interests include scene text detection, image processing. Yuan received the Master degree from Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 2013, and the B.S. degree from Shandong University in 2006.

Dimosthenis Karatzas is a Senior Research Fellow at the Computer Vision Centre, Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona, Spain. He received his PhD from the University of Liverpool, UK in 2003. He has co-authored over 90 publications in refereed journals and conferences. He is leading the Robust Reading research team at the Computer Vision Centre, and has been principal investigator on numerous research and knowledge transfer projects. In 2013 he received the IAPR / ICDAR Young Investigator Award. D. Karatzas has served in various roles at major conferences in his field (ICDAR, DAS, CBDAR, ICPR, ICFHR), including co-chairing IWRR 2016, CBDAR 2015 and IWRR 2014. D. Karatzas is a lead organiser of the Robust Reading Competitions series. He served as a guest editor for the Int. Journal of Document Analysis and Recognition special issue on “Robust Reading” in 2015. D. Karatzas has been a founding member and a member of the executive committee of the UK Chapter of the SPIE, while he is currently the chair of IAPR TC-11 (Reading Systems), a member of the IAPR- Industrial Liaison Committee and member of the IEEE, the SPIE and the IAPR. In 2007 D. Karatzas co- founded the spin-off company TruColour, UK, which specializes on perception-based color calibration solutions.

Wafa Khlif is currently a first-year Ph.D. student. She is co-supervised by Professor Jean-Christophe Burie at L3i Laboratory, University of La Rochelle (France) and Professor Adel Alimi at Regim Lab, National School of Engineers of Sfax (Tunisia). Her PhD thesis title is ''Multi-Lingual and Multi-Oriented Text Detection in Born-Digital documents''. Wafa received the engineering diploma in computer science from the Tunisian engineering university ENIS-SFAX within the exchange program Erasmus Mundus with Central Nantes in 2014 and the M.Sc. degree in 2015 from Polytech Nice-Sophia, the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis. Her research interests are in machine learning and information retrieval.

Zhenbo Luo (SRC-Beijing Text Processing Lab). Zhenbo Luo received the Master degree in Electronics Engineering from Tsinghua University in 2006, and the supervisor is Professor Xiaoqing Ding. Received the B.Sc degree in Electronics Engineering from Fudan University in 2003. He is a Principal Engineer in Samsung R&D Institute China ,Beijing. Machine Learning Lab. His research interests include scene text recognition, OCR, and handwriting recognition. He leads the team to develop commercialization OCR and handwriting recognition technologies for Samsung smart phones, visual display and printing business.

Muhammad Muzzamil LUQMAN, is currently a Research Engineer (Permanent) at the L3i Laboratory, University of La Rochelle (France). Luqman has worked as a Research Engineer at the Bordeaux Bioinformatics Center (Centre de Bioinformatique de Bordeaux), France and has worked as a Postdoctoral researcher with Professor Jean-Marc Ogier, at L3i Laboratory, University of La Rochelle (France). Luqman has a PhD in Computer Science from François Rabelais University of Tours (France) and Autonoma University of Barcelona (Spain). His PhD thesis was co-supervised by Professor Jean- Yves Ramel and Professor Josep Llados; and was titled “Fuzzy Multilevel Graph Embedding for Recognition, Indexing and Retrieval of Graphic Document Images”. Luqman participated in GEPR contest of ICPR 2010 and his method was ranked 3rd. His research interests include Structural Pattern Recognition, Document Image Analysis, Camera-Based Document Analysis and Recognition, Graphics Recognition, Machine Learning, Computer Vision, Augmented Reality and Biomimicry. Luqman has authored more than 25 scientific publications including a book, a journal paper and international conference papers. Luqman is a regular reviewer for journals (PR, IJDAR, IJPRAI, IJCSAI, TALLIP), he regularly serves on the program committees of many international scientific events (ICDAR, DAS, CIFED, ICET) and has actively participated in organizing several international conferences, workshops and scientific competitions. Luqman actively participated recently for organizing the SmartDoc competition for ICDAR 2015 and SSGCI competition for ICPR 2016.

Nibal Nayef works currently as a post-doctoral researcher at the L3i Laboratory at the University of La Rochelle, France. She works on graphics recognition , quality assessment and enhancement of mobile captured documents, deep learning-based text/image segmentation and scene text detection. Nayef has a Ph.D. in computer science (2012) from the technical university of Kaiserslautern in Germany. She was a member of the IUPR laboratory (Image Understanding and Pattern Recognition) there, where she finished her PhD thesis entitled “Geometric-based symbol spotting and retrieval in technical line drawings”. Her research interests are in machine learning, multimedia data mining and information retrieval. She is a regular reviewer in IJDAR journal and DAS, ICDAR, ICFHR, ICPR and other conferences. Email: Website:

Umapada Pal is a professor and head of the computer vision and patetrn recognition unit at the Indian statistical institute. Umapada Pal received his Ph.D. in 1997 from Indian Statistical Institute. He did his Post Doctoral research at INRIA (Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique), France. From January 1997, he is a Faculty member of Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition Unit of the Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata and at present he is Professor and Head of Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition Unit. His fields of research interest include Digital Document Processing, Optical Character Recognition, Biometrics, Word spotting, Video Document Analysis etc. He has published 297 research papers in various international journals, conference proceedings and edited volumes. Because of his significant impact in the Document Analysis research, in 2003 he received ICDAR Outstanding Young Researcher Award from International Association for Pattern Recognition (IAPR). In 2005-2006 Dr. Pal has received JSPS fellowship from Japan government. In 2008, 2011 and 2012, Dr. Pal received Visiting fellowship from Spain, France and Australia government, respectively. Dr. Pal has been serving as General/Program/Organizing Chair of many conferences including International Conference on Document Analysis and Recognition (ICDAR), International Conference on Frontiers of Handwritten Recognition (ICFHR), International Workshop on Document Analysis and Systems (DAS), Asian Conference on Pattern recognition (ACPR) etc. Also he has served as a program committee member of more than 50 international events. He has many international research collaborations and supervising Ph.D. students of many foreign universities. At present he has been serving as an associate Editor of four journals: ACM Transactions on Asian and Low-Resource Language Information Processing (ACM), Pattern Recognition Letters (Elsevier), International Journal of Document Analysis and Recognition (Springer), and Electronic Letters on Computer Vision and Image Analysis (ELCVIA). Also he has served as a guest editor of several special issues. He is a Fellow of IAPR (International Association of Pattern Recognition).

Christophe Rigaud, is currently a research engineer (postdoc) at the L3i Laboratory of the University of La Rochelle (France). He received a double European PhD degree in computer science from the University of La Rochelle (France) and the Autonomous University of Barcelona (Spain) in 2014. His PhD thesis title is "Segmentation and indexation of complex objects in comic book images", supervised by Jean-Christophe Burie, Jean-Marc Ogier and Dimosthenis Karatzas from the Computer Vision Center (CVC) of the Autonomous University of Barcelona. His current research interest is the analysis of comic book images using computer vision techniques. He aims to discover how to make a complete and automatic description of the comic page image content, namely the position of the panels, speech balloons, text, comic characters and their interactions. Christophe Rigaud has authored 15 scientific publications including 4 book chapters, two journals and several international conference and workshop papers. He also serves several local and program comities such as the Concept Lattices and their Applications (CLA’13), GREC’15 Engineering Drawing Challenge.

Fei Yin is an Associate Professor at the National Laboratory of Pattern Recognition(NLPR), Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China. He received the B.S. degree in Computer Science from Xidian University of Posts and Telecommunications, Xi'an, China, the M.E. degree in Pattern Recognition and Intelligent Systems from Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China, the Ph.D. degree in Pattern Recognition and Intelligent Systems from the Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, in 1999, 2002 and 2010, respectively. His research interests include document image analysis, handwritten character recognition and scene text detection and recognition. He has published over 40 papers at international journals and conferences.

Important Dates

1 Feb to 31 Mar

  • Manifestation of interest by participants opens
  • Asking/Answering questions about the details of the competition Initial website available

1 Mar

  • Competition formal announcement

31 Mar

  • Website fully ready
  • Registration of participants continues
  • Evaluation protocol, file formats etc. available

1 Apr to 31 May

  • Train set available - training period - MLT challenge in progress -Participants evaluate their methods on the training/validation sets - Prepare for submission
  • Registration is still open

1 Jun

  • Registration closes for this MLT challenge for ICDAR-2017

1 Jun to 1 Jul

  • Test set available

1 Jul

  • Deadline for submission of results by participants

1 Nov

  • The public release of the full dataset