Computational approaches to the study of dialectal and typological variation
Workshop organized as part of the European Summer School on Logic, Language and Information ESSLLI 2012 (http://www.esslli2012.pl), August 6-10 2012 (ESSLLI first week), Opole, Poland
Workshop Organizers: Erhard Hinrichs (erhard.hinrichs at uni-tuebingen.de), Gerhard Jäger (gerhard.jaeger at uni-tuebingen.de)
Computational dialectometry is an innovative method to investigate language variation. This still rather young approach employs techniques from statistical NLP - such as pattern recognition, sequence alignment, clustering, and dimension reduction techniques - to study synchronous dialectal variation. It uses easy-to-operationalize data (such as phonetic transcriptions of a small core vocabulary) collected from a large number of speakers within a certain geographic area. Methods from unsupervised machine learning are then used to measure dialect distances and to model dialect continua. Together with advances in digitally collecting population and geographic data, it is now possible to study the correlation of linguistic variation with social and geographic factors.
Recent years have seen remarkable efforts in typology to set up electronic data inventories that contain significant data sets from large, typologically diverse and representative samples of languages. The data types thus collected in computational typology are remarkably similar - from an operational point of view - to the kind of resources that are being used in computational dialectometry. It is therefore a natural move to bring these two communities into contact and to discuss the mutual usability of algorithms and perhaps common standards for data encoding and exchange.
The goals of this workshop are twofold: - to expose the ESSLLI community in general and researchers at the interface of language and computation in particular to the application of data-driven NLP methods to a rather new domain, and - to provide a forum for practitioners and students of computational dialectometry, of quantitative typology, and of historical linguistics to learn about each other's research concerns and accompanying methods, and to receive feedback as well as inspiration for possible collaboration across sub-disciplines.
Additional information about the workshop is available at:
Authors are invited to submit an EXTENDED ABSTRACT for a 30-minute presentation (including discussion). Submissions should not exceed 3 pages, including figures, data, and references.
Please upload your submission at EasyChair via the following link:
The submissions will be reviewed anonymously by the workshop's programme committee. The abstracts accepted for presentation will appear in the workshop web site and will be published as part of the ESSLLI 2012 proceedings. In addition, we are considering the possibility of compiling a journal special issue from selected papers presented at the workshop.
Balthasar Bickel (Zürich University), Michael Cysouw (LMU München), Charlotte Gooskens (Groningen University), Erhard Hinrichs (Tübingen University; co-chair), Gerhard Jäger (Tübingen University; co-chair), Brian Joseph (The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio), John Nerbonne (Groningen University), Søren Wichmann (MPI for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig)
All workshop participants, including the authors, are required to register for ESSLLI.
- March 1: *Deadline* for Submission - April 15: Notification of Acceptance - June 1: Deadline for Proceedings Papers - August 6-10: Workshop
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