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  • CRC1646: Linguistic Creativity in Communication

    Campus der Universität Bielefeld
    © Universität Bielefeld

Area B: Linguistic creativity and interpretation: meaning, context, community

B01: Coercion as a creative mechanism in compositional interpretation 

PIs: Prof. Dr. Oliver Bott/ Prof. Dr. Jens Michaelis/ Dr. Torgrim Solstad

B01 is concerned with the flexible adjustment of meaning in compositional interpretation. In particular, we're interested in potential compositional mismatches as they can be observed for complement coercion, where, for instance, begin a book is interpreted as reading or writing a book: Does the incremental interpretation of such mismatches constitute ordinary compositional processes or do they involve creative repair mechanisms? The project combines experimental semantic/pragmatic research with formal modelling of lexical semantics in composition, using large-scale, citizen-science offline data and online data from eyetracking during reading.

Open Positions:

  • PhD position 1 (65%) Profile: The successful candidate should have a Master’s degree either in psycholinguistics, theoretical or computational linguistics, and a good background in one of the other areas, respectively. Since the experiments will be conducted in German and involve subtle lexical semantic properties, a very good command of German is highly desirable. Experience with statistical methods (frequentist or Bayesian mixed effects regression modeling) and programming skills are desirable.
  • PhD position 2 (65%) Profile: The successful candidate should have a Master’s degree in psycholinguistics, and a good background in theoretical linguistics. Experience with eyetracking and/or ERP research and statistical methods (frequentist or Bayesian mixed effects regression modeling) is a prerequisite. A good command of German is desirable.

Details project B01 including open positions (.pdf)

 


B02: Computational linguistic creativity in reference games between interactive dialogue agents

PIs: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Hendrik Buschmeier/ Prof. Dr. Sina Zarrieß

The aim of project B02 is to (i) investigate human speakers' linguistic creativity in iterated dialogue tasks in changing environments and (ii) model the creative formation of reference strategies in artificial dialogue agents whose linguistic knowledge is represented in a language model trained on interaction data. The main goal is to develop a computational referring expression generation and dialogue architecture that accounts for individual and partner-specific linguistic creativity and incorporates general reasoning and planning mechanisms that explore and transform the agent's language model according to the needs of an ongoing interaction.

Open Positions:

  • PhD position 1 (100%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a master’s degree in computational linguistics, cognitive science, linguistics, computer science or a related field and a strong interest in (1) analyzing dialogue data and (2) computationally modeling the dialogue and interactional components of the dialogue agent.

Details project B02 including open positions (.pdf)

 


B03: Indirectness in discourse: interrogatives, implicit meaning and incongruence 

PIs: Prof. Dr. Tanja Ackermann/ Prof. Dr. Jutta Hartmann/ Dr. Arndt Riester

B03 investigates how non-literal meaning emerges in indirectness within discourse. We examine indirect speech acts based on interrogatives and indirectness in question-response sequences (e.g. in interviews), adopting a cross-linguistic perspective including German, English and Japanese. Using various empirical sources, such as grammatical descriptions, experiments and corpus studies, we look at how formal syntactic factors (clause types) and the structure of discourse (questions-under-discussion) contribute to indirectness, which mechanisms allow for enrichment of conventional interpretation, and which contexts facilitate or limit such creative interpretation.

Open Positions:

  • PhD position 1 (65%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a background in linguistics (syntax, pragmatics, and/or interface) and additionally has experience in experimental linguistics or corpus work. (Linguistic) Knowledge of a non-European language is a plus.
  • PhD position 2 (65%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a background in discourse pragmatics (e.g. discourse structure, speech acts) and an interest in corpus annotation.

Details project B03 including open positions (.pdf)

 


B04: Grammatical and conversational analysis of creative variations of multi-word expressions

PIs: Prof. Dr. Barbara Job/ Prof. Dr. Ralf Vogel/ Dr. Heike Knerich

B04 deals with ad hoc invented or creatively modified multi-word expressions in natural dialogues, their formal properties, their interactive processing, as well as their limits and conditions for success in the context of local and global conversational tasks. A special feature of the project is the methodological approach that draws from two independent disciplines – conversation analysis and formal grammatical analysis – which complement each other in the study of linguistic creativity.

Open Positions:

  • PhD position 1 (65%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a master in linguistics or a related field. He/she has completed an excellent master's thesis in the field of linguistic conversation analysis, interactional linguistics or Gesprächsanalyse. He/she has experience in recording, transcribing (according to the conventions of GAT 2) and especially in analysing natural conversations. He/she has a solid education in all relevant fields of linguistics and an interest in collaborating within and beyond the field.
  • PhD position 2 (65%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a master in linguistics or a related field. He/she has completed an excellent master's thesis in the field of semantics, pragmatics and/or morpho-syntax of German. He/she has experience in the formal analysis of the structure and meaning of complex linguistic expressions. He/she has a solid education in all relevant fields of linguistics and an interest in collaborating within and beyond the field.

Details project B04 including open positions (.pdf)

 


B05: Open texture as a source of semantic creativity

PIs: Prof. Dr. Julia Zakkou/ Prof. Dr. Christian Nimtz

Project B05 investigates the variant of objective interpretative indeterminacy known as 'open texture'. Combining approaches from metasemantics, semantics and pragmatics, the project analyses the nature, grounds, and consequences of open texture in classificatory predicates, and it explores the foundational role of this phenomenon in the emergence of linguistic creativity.

Open Positions:

  • PhD position 1 (65%) Profile: The ideal candidate has a completed academic university degree at Master’s level (Master, M.A. or comparable) in a subject relevant to the project. The candidate has a suitable background in the philosophy of language or in linguistics, and a keen interest to join a research team on open texture.

Details project B05 including open positions (.pdf)

 


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