Invited Speakers

(Displayed in a random order every time)

  • Sharon Goldwater (Edinburgh)
    Sharon Goldwater is a Reader (similar to a US Associate Professor) in the Institute for Language, Cognition and Computation at the University of Edinburgh’s School of Informatics. She received her PhD in 2007 from Brown University, supervised by Mark Johnson, and spent two years as a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University before moving to Edinburgh. Her research interests include unsupervised learning for natural language processing, computer modelling of language acquisition in children, and computational studies of language use. Dr. Goldwater holds a Scholar Award from the James S McDonnell Foundation for her work on “Understanding synergies in language acquisition through computational modelling” and is the 2016 recipient of the Roger Needham Award from the British Computer Society for “distinguished research contribution in computer science by a UK-based researcher who has completed up to 10 years of post-doctoral research.” Dr. Goldwater has sat on the editorial boards of several journals, including Computational Linguistics, Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, and OPEN MIND: Advances in Cognitive Science (a new open-access journal). She co-chaired the 2014 Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (EACL) and is now chair-elect of the EACL governing board.
  • Géraldine Walther (Zurich)
    “My general research interests lie in the fields of morphology and morphosyntax, linguistic typology, and cognitive science. My work integrates the development and use of computational and quantitative methods.
    “I am interested in the degree of internal cohesion within morphological systems as well as in the role of morphology and morphological units within the broader linguistic system. My approach is at the same time typological, formal and quantitative. It focuses specifically on system-level patterns of morphological organisation and their consequences for cognitive processing and development, as well as for diachronic change. Phenomena under investigation principally involve the distribution and sharing of linguistic information between morphology and its interfaces, issues that arise in segmentation and in the definition of morphological units, and those that arise in identifying the descriptive features best suited for describing morphological systems. I am especially interested in constraints and distributions of gradient patterns and ‘optional’ units in natural language across various speaker populations.”
  • Adina Williams (Facebook AI Research)
    “As a highly interdisciplinary researcher, I specialize in semantics, syntax, and their interface, with neurolinguistics, computational linguistics, and formal linguistic theory as my main methodologies. Theoretical linguistic insights form the basis for my investigations into grammatical representations in the mind and computer. I defended my PhD in Linguistics at New York University in Apr. 2018, and it conferred in September 2018; it is Representing Relationality: MEG Studies of Argument Structure, and includes 3 experimental chapters (MEG), and a chapter on classifying words as transitive-intransitive using only their orthographic forms.”
  • Janet Pierrehumbert (Oxford)
    I received my B.A in Linguistics from Harvard in 1975, and my Ph.D from MIT in 1980. Much of my Ph.D research on English prosody and intonation was carried out in the Linguistics and AI Research Department of AT&T Bell Laboratories, where I served as a Member of Technical Staff through 1989. I then joined the Linguistics faculty at Northwestern University. I was promoted to Professor in 1996 and also served terms as department chair and director of graduate studies. I moved to Oxford in May, 2015 as Professor of Language Modelling in the Oxford e-Research Centre. I am one of the founding members of the Association for Laboratory Phonology, an interdisciplinary research organisation that promotes the scientific study of all aspects of language sound structure. I am a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Linguistic Society of America, and the Cognitive Science Society.