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Case Study

Streamlining Complex Data Annotation for Aviation Safety

Client:  A Government-Funded Research Institution Specializing in Aviation, Defense, and Healthcare

Project:  Transcription and Semantic Labeling of 1000 Hours of ATC Recordings


  • Locating and training ATC transcribers without prior experience in the field

  • Managing the complexity of verbatim transcription, speaker identification, and semantic labeling of ATC conversations

KeenSight, renowned for its expertise in data annotation, was tasked by a prominent research institution with a project of critical importance to aviation safety. The goal was to accurately transcribe and semantically label 1000 hours of air traffic control (ATC) recordings. These recordings are crucial for analyzing communication between pilots and ATC officers, requiring a high degree of precision and understanding of ATC protocols. 


Overcoming the Transcriber Shortage


Faced with the challenge of finding skilled ATC transcribers, KeenSight turned to ATC forums, a niche but effective recruitment ground. Through targeted advertising and outreach, we attracted a pool of applicants with the requisite background. Intensive training sessions on our proprietary tools ensured these new recruits were quickly brought up to speed, ready to tackle the complex task at hand. 


Innovative Approach to Annotation Complexity

The intricate nature of ATC communication posed a significant hurdle. To ensure accuracy and manage cognitive load, KeenSight implemented a divide-and-conquer strategy. Annotators first transcribed the recordings verbatim, focusing on capturing every detail, including utterance segmentation and speaker identification. In a subsequent pass, they applied semantic labels to the transcriptions, identifying key ATC concepts such as landing clearances and heading instructions. This two-step process, supported by our advanced transcription and text labeling tools, allowed for efficient and precise annotation. 


Completing the project in just three months, KeenSight set a new industry standard for efficiency, quality, and cost-effectiveness. Our innovative methodologies and the dedication of our team resulted in high-quality data annotation that exceeded our client's expectations. The success of this project not only demonstrated our capability to tackle highly specialized and complex annotation tasks but also led to the extension of our contract for further projects. 

This case study highlights KeenSight's ability to adapt and innovate in the face of unique challenges. By leveraging community outreach for recruitment and employing a strategic approach to data annotation, we were able to deliver exceptional results that significantly benefited our client in the aviation sector. Our work stands as a testament to our commitment to pushing the boundaries of what is possible in data annotation, ensuring that even the most complex projects are completed efficiently, accurately, and to the highest standards. 


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