LINGUIST List 10.325

Tue Mar 2 1999

Calls: Generation of Nominals, Economy of Lang Design

Editor for this issue: Scott Fults <>

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  1. Rodger Kibble, Extended deadline: ESSLLI'99 Workshop on Generation of Nominals
  2. Anne Reboul, LICSSOL 1

Message 1: Extended deadline: ESSLLI'99 Workshop on Generation of Nominals

Date: Fri, 26 Feb 1999 15:57:43 GMT
From: Rodger Kibble <>
Subject: Extended deadline: ESSLLI'99 Workshop on Generation of Nominals

 ESSLLI-99 workshop on

 The Generation of Nominal Expressions

 University of Utrecht, The Netherlands
 9-13 August 1999

Following a number of requests we have decided to extend the deadline 
for abstracts until *** MARCH 15th ***.

However we ask intending submitters to notify us of their intention
by email as soon as possible, preferably by March 1st.

Abstracts and notification of intention to submit should be sent to, with "ESSLLI99" in the Subject line.

Full details of the call are appended below.

Rodger Kibble & Kees van Deemter
Information Technology Research Institute (ITRI) 
University of Brighton
Lewes Road, Watts Building 
Brighton BN2 4GJ
United Kingdom

--Details of Call--


The workshop will take place in association with the 11th 
European Summer School "Logic Linguistics and Information" 
(ESSLLI), to be held in Utrecht, The Netherlands, from 9-20 
August 1999. The format of the workshop is 5 x 90 minutes on 
the 5 consecutive days of 9 to 13 August 1999.

The ESSLLI Summer School is organized under the auspices of the 
European Association for Logic, Language and Information (FoLLI).
Previous ESSLLI Summer Schools have been highly successful,
attracting around 500 students from Europe and elsewhere. The 
school has developed into an important meeting place and forum 
for discussion for students and researchers interested in the 
interdisciplinary study of Logic, Language and Information.
For more information see <>;. 

Workshop Description:

 If someone attempted to assess the `state of the art' of 
 linguistic research on nominal expressions by looking at 
 how present-day programs generate nominals, he or she would 
 no doubt underestimate the level of sophistication 
 of theoretical work on nominals. It can be argued that this is 
 because existing work on the computational generation of nominals 
 has limited itself to relatively simple nominals, often focussing 
 on simple (singular) definite descriptions and pronouns.
 Alternatively, it might be contended that much of the theoretical 
 work in this area is not mature enough to be appicable in 
 generation. Be this as it may, work on the generation of nominals 
 has not profited much from theoretical research in formal semantics 
 and psycholinguistics on the meaning, interpretation and production 
 of nominal expressions. 

 This workshop will try to bridge the gap between theory and 
 practice in this area by focusing on the generation of nominal 
 expressions of different linguistic types including, for example, 
 indefinite and quantificational NPs (of different monotonicity 

 The theme of the workshop is closely related to that of a number 
 of ongoing research projects, including the GNOME (`Generation of 
 NOMinal Expressions') project, in which the ITRI (Brighton) and 
 HCRC (Edinburgh/Durham) collaborate, and which is funded by the 
 EPSRC in the United Kingdom. 

 Topics for which submissions are invited include:

 (1) The influence of discourse context on the appropriateness
 and interpretation of a nominal expression
 (2) Descriptive issues concerning the treatment of plurality, 
 bridging, aggregation, eventualities, discourse deixis, 
 cross-modal reference, etc.
 (3) Representational issues (i.e., what kind of meaning
 representations should form the input to the generation 
 (4) Reversibility of grammars
 (5) Differences in textual style or `genre'
 (6) Psycholinguistic research relevant to computational 
 Natural Language Generation (NLG)
 (7) Corpus-based work leading to insights relevant for 
 computational NLG
 (8) Issues of system/algorithm evaluation.

Practical issues:

We welcome short (i.e., roughly 1000-1500 words) electronic 
submissions (send email to 
on the theme of the workshop. Submissions should be in Postscript 
or plain ascii. Please include "ESSLLI99" in the Subject line of 
your message to make things easy for us. The deadline for 
receipt of abstracts is March 1st; submissions may also be sent by post
to the address below, but they must reach ITRI by this date.

In accordance with the description of the Workshop Description,
we encourage submissions about theoretical (e.g., formal semantic
or psycholinguistic), applied, or corpus-based work, as long as 
the work is clearly relevant for NLG programs. No matter what 
they consider the main focus of their work, we ask authors to 
*stress relevance for NLG* in their submission (and, later, in 
their presentation). This will ensure that all contributions will 
contain a common `core', notwithstanding their differences in 

It is ESSLLI's practice to make sure that workshops go ahead only
if there turns out to be a sufficient level of interest, based on 
quantity and quality of submissions.

Workshop speakers are required to register for the Summer School; 
however, workshop speakers will be able to register at a reduced 
rate to be determined by the Organizing Committee. Limited funds 
are available to contribute to speakers' expenses in exceptional

Important dates:

- First call for papers: 22 October 1998
- Second call for papers: 28 January 1999
- Deadline for submissions of abstracts: *** 15 March 1999 ***
- Notification of acceptance: 1 May 1999
- Workshop to be held: August 9-13

For any questions, please contact the organizers or
consult our web page at

Rodger Kibble & Kees van Deemter
Information Technology Research Institute (ITRI) 
University of Brighton
Lewes Road, Watts Building 
Brighton BN2 4GJ
United Kingdom

Fax: +44 1273 642908
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Message 2: LICSSOL 1

Date: Mon, 1 Mar 1999 17:45:13 +0100 (MET)
From: Anne Reboul <>
Subject: LICSSOL 1

The Lyon Institute for Cognitive Science (LICS) is hosting The First
International Symposium on Linguistics (LICSSOL1) October 12-15, 1999

The Lyon Institute for Cognitive Science is pleased to announce its
first international conference in linguistics to be held at the
institute on the following topic:

 Economy in Language Design, Computation and Use

 Notions of 'least effort' and 'economy' in a pretheoritical sense
have always played a part in explanations concerning language use,
evolution and design; they became an important formal construct with
the rise of Generative Grammar in the mid fifties and their role is
now again at the center of much contemporary research in phonology,
syntax, semantics and pragmatics.

 This is particularly true of recent work prompted by what is known
as the"Minimalist Program" of Generative Grammar. At the core of this
research program are two distinct but related notions of ecomony; the
first one investigates how parcimonious the Faculty of Language "FL"
is in availing the speakers' Internal Language "IL" with devices
providing access to other components of the mind/brain: should one
countenance more than the structures and features that enter into the
Logical Form (meaning) and the Phonetic Form (sound) of utterances?
The second one attempts to find out how considerations of economy
enter into the way linguistic expressions are generated; do
computations that are more economical along well-defined dimensions
--e.g. number of steps, "distance", "weight", "structural complexity"
etc.-- block less economical ones? Can economy in this latter sense
always be construed "locally" or should the theory of FL also allow
for a more "global" notion.

 In a related, though clearly distinct sense, post-Gricean pragmatics,
in particular Sperber's and Wilson's theory of Relevance, devotes a
great deal of attention to considerations of economy. It has by now
been convincingly shown that the pragmatic interpretation of
utterances is under-determined by the strictly linguistic
information. If so, the question of how and on what (formal) basis
speakers and hearers select contextual information is evidently
crucial. Relevance theory suggests that the mecanisms that make that
selection possible rest on a general economy principle that require
that a balance be found between processing costs and interpretive

 Notions of economy also play a role in various areas of formal
semantics. Sample issues investigated in this perspective concern the
role of economy in favoring certain quantifier scope interpretations,
in resolving anaphoric processes in their broadest sense --including
focus determination, VP elipsis etc.-- or in limiting the availability
of recourse to op-erations such as type shifting etc. As for
Phonology one need hardly stress that much contemporary debate centers
on the best way to encode considerations of simplicity economy and
optimality into a suitable formalism.

 It is the organisers' hope that this symposium will help refine the
various notions of economy sketched above and promote fruitful
interdisciplinary research on this topic by providing a suitable
format for comparison, confrontation and debate. The conference will
have 4 sessions; each session will have six one hour presentations (45
minutes talks + 15 minutes discussions); each session will have a
number of guest lecturers whose work has played a major part in
shaping and/or reintroducing issues of economy in contemporary
linguistic research.

Invited speakers:
Nicholas Asher, Gennaro Chierchia, Tanya Reinhart (semantics) Diane
Blakemore, Jacques Moeschler, Deirdre Wilson (pragmatics) Chris
Collins, Luigi Rizzi, Edwin Williams (syntax) Franois Dell, Morris
Halle, Alan Prince (phonology)

 Linguists are invited to send 5 copies of their anonymous two page
abstracts to:

Economy Conference Selection committee, 
c/o Viviane Dprez, Jean-Yves Pollock & Anne Reboul
Institut des Sciences Cognitives
CNRS UPR 9075,
67 Boulevard Pinel
69675 Bron cedex

or by email

Deadline for submission: May 1, 1999
Results of the selection process no later than July 1, 1999

call for papers :
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