Event semantics: Advent Workshop

After Oslo–and a snow-delay–Katie stopped in Cologne for a workshop on event semantics, organised by Carla Umbach and Stefan Hinterwimmer at Universität zu Köln . There she presented a new version of the work she’d presented in Zurich and Lagodekhi, about locative subjects in an English change-of-state construction, and received a lot of good feedback. With this feedback, she’ll hopefully be able to start writing it all down. 😉


The invited speaker was Alte Grønn, who told us about viewpoint from a slavic perspective. Other speakers were mainly from German universities, and included Jens Fleischhauer & Thomas Gamerschlag on scalarity and telicity in fictive motion, Frauke Buscher on whether sound emission verbs can be analysed as motion verbs, and Katja Gobrovska on the German adverb sorgfältig. And although there were no Christmas market visits, the participants enjoyed some of the famous, tiny Kölsch beers. 😉

CoPo 2017

Katie and some colleagues from the UPV/EHU went to the Workshop on Approaches to Coercion and Polysemy in Oslo, Norway. Organised by Alexandra Spalek and Matthew Gotham, the workshop was a nice gathering of semanticists, philosophers, computational linguists, and even a psycholinguist. Katie presented a part of her MA thesis, about the polysemy of one English posture verb and discussed whether or not coercion is at play, and Bryan Leferman of his dissertation, which examined evaluative adjectives and the status of events in our ontology.

The invited speakers were Nick Asher and Robin Cooper, and there were many discussions about dependent type theory.  🙂

It was a super cold time to be in Norway (read: snow!!), but the sun was shining and we even got some daylight to explore the town.  😀 Thanks for the laughs Begoña, Marina, and Bryan!

CSSP 2017

Laia and Elena are back from Paris, where they have presented their recent work on so-called ‘Premise Conditionals’ (aka ‘Factual Conditionals’). The Colloque de Syntaxe et Sémantique à Paris takes place every other year and gathers formal linguists interested in phenomena that concern form and meaning.


This year, the invited speakers were Regine Eckardt (Konstanz), who talked about deliberative questions, Stephen Wechsler (U. Texas at Austin), who discussed various forms of v

erb alternations in relation to polysemy, and Marco Baroni (Facebook), who introduced the audience to terms such as neural networks and artificial children.

Paris is always a good idea, and so were the name tags that the organizers devised 🙂



TbiLLC 2017


From 18-22 September, Katie participated in the Twelfth International Tbilisi Symposium on Language, Logic and Computation at Lagodekhi, Georgia. In the Language session, she presented her own work, “Exploring the multi-dimensional meaning of Extra Arguments in English”. In a workshop, Transmodal Perspectives on Secondary Meaning,  she also presented new joint work with Daniel Hole, “Secondary Meanings in Argument Alternations”. The workshop included talks by Stefan Hinterwimmer, Henk Zeevat, Fabian Bross, Daniel Gutzmann, Katharina Turgay, and Lavi Wolf. Katie received insightful feedback on both projects, which will help her get further in solving the puzzle of why variations in argument structure seems to license secondary meaning in the non-base variants.


The symposium itself was wonderful: super organisation, beautiful location at the foot of the Caucausus mountains, and a great group of people. While there, Katie was able to meet many new and old friends in the linguistics and logic community (list of speakers can be found here), all while getting to know the Georgian culture and cuisine. All in all a good time!

SLE 2017


From 10-14.09, Berit and Katie participated in the 50th Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea in Zurich, Switzerland. Berit and Olga Borik organised a workshop, entitled “Participles: Form, Use and Meaning (PartFUM)“, and Katie presented a talk entitled “Extra arguments: a Multi-dimensional perspective”. The workshop was a nice mix of talks on participles and Katie’s talk in the general session went well. Being such a big conference, with many sub-disciplines of linguistics, there were many new colleagues to meet. Even with the large number of lingusits, the organisation was very good (there was an SLE app!), as was the conference dinner– complete with a linguist band and dancing linguists. Next year’s SLE will take place in Tallinn, Estonia.

July meeting at UPF

thesis proposal at UPF On July 11th, 2017, Elena participated in the evaluation committee of Chenjie Yuan’s dissertation proposal. Chenje is both Laia’s and Enric Vallduví‘s PhD student, and his thesis is concerned with the expression of contrast in Mandarin and Wu Chinese. The other members of the committee were Louise McNally and Xavier Villalba.

On July 12th, Laia and Elena presented their ongoing work on echoicity, contrast and conditionals in a talk at the GLiF Seminar. It was a good opportunity to discuss how the conditionals under study, which are possible in Romance, are absent in other languages (such as English and German), and to establish that the similar German and English versions are not biscuit but regular hypothetical conditionals, where the consequent epistemically depends on the antecedent.

Talking about ‘good’ in a workshop on subjectivity

poster-the-lexicon-of-subjectivity On Tuesday, June 13th, Berit and Elena presented their latest ideas on the meaning of subsective good. This was in the frame of the workshop “The Lexicon of Subjectivity“, organized by colleague Dan Zeman, at the UPV/EHU.

The other presenters in this one-day workshop were John Collins (East Anglia), Lisa Bylinina (Leiden), Hazel Pearson (Queen Mary), Carla Umbach (ZAS) and Sara Packalén (Stockholm).