LINGUIST List 13.1306

Thu May 9 2002

Calls: Neural Processing Workshops, Semantics & Syntax

Editor for this issue: Renee Galvis <>

As a matter of policy, LINGUIST discourages the use of abbreviations or acronyms in conference announcements unless they are explained in the text.


  1. Zoubin Ghahramani, NIPS*2002 call for workshops
  2. Ileana Comorovski, 2nd CFP Workshop - 'EXISTENCE: Semantics and Syntax', Nancy, France

Message 1: NIPS*2002 call for workshops

Date: Wed, 8 May 2002 04:09:21 +0100
From: Zoubin Ghahramani <>
Subject: NIPS*2002 call for workshops


	 Neural Information Processing Systems
		 Natural and Synthetic
	 Post-Conference Workshops
		 December 13 and 14, 2002
	 Whistler/Blackcomb Resort, BC, Canada

Following the regular program of the Neural Information Processing
Systems 2002 conference in Vancouver, BC, Canada, workshops on various
current topics in neural information processing will be held on
December 13 and 14, 2002, in Whistler, BC, Canada. We invite
researchers interested in chairing one of these workshops to submit
workshop proposals.

The goal of the workshops is to provide an informal forum for
researchers to discuss important research questions and challenges.
Controversial issues, open problems, and comparisons of competing
approaches are encouraged and preferred as workshop topics.
Representation of alternative viewpoints and panel-style discussions
are particularly encouraged. Workshop topics include, but are not
limited to, the following:

Active Learning, Attention, Audition, Bayesian Analysis, Bayesian
Networks, Benchmarking, Brain Imaging, Computational Complexity,
Computational Molecular Biology, Control, Genetic Algorithms,
Graphical Models, Hippocampus and Memory, Hybrid
Supervised/Unsupervised Learning, Hybrid HMM/ANN Systems,
Implementations, Independent Component Analysis, Mean-Field Methods,
Markov Chain Monte-Carlo Methods, Music, Network Dynamics, Neural
Coding, Neural Plasticity, On-Line Learning, Optimization, Recurrent
Nets, Robot Learning, Rule Extraction, Self-Organization, Sensory
Biophysics, Signal Processing, Spike Timing, Support Vectors, Speech,
Time Series, Topological Maps, and Vision.

Detailed descriptions of previous workshops may be found at

There will be six hours of workshop meetings per day, split into
morning and afternoon sessions, with free time in between for ongoing
individual exchange or outdoor activities.

Selected workshops may be invited to submit proceedings for
publication in the post-NIPS workshops monographs series published by
the MIT Press.

Workshop organizers have several responsibilities including:

- Coordinating workshop participation and content, which includes
 arranging short informal presentations by experts,
 arranging for expert commentators to sit on a discussion panel, 
 formulating a set of discussion topics, etc.

- Moderating the discussion, and reporting its findings and
 conclusions to the group during evening plenary sessions

- Writing a brief summary and/or coordinating submitted material
 for post-conference electronic dissemination.


Interested parties should submit a short proposal for a workshop of
interest via email by August 9, 2002.

Proposals should include title, description of what the workshop is to
address and accomplish, proposed workshop length (1 or 2 days),
planned format (e.g., lectures, group discussions, panel discussion,
combinations of the above, etc.), and proposed speakers. Names of
potential invitees should be given where possible. Preference will be
given to workshops that reserve a significant portion of time for open
discussion or panel discussion, as opposed to pure "mini-conference"
format. An example format is:

 Tutorial lecture providing background and introducing
 terminology relevant to the topic.

 Two short lectures introducing different approaches,
 alternating with discussions after each lecture. 

 Discussion or panel presentation.

 Short talks or panels alternating with discussion and
 question/answer sessions. 

 General discussion and wrap-up.

We suggest that organizers allocate at least 50% of the workshop
schedule to questions, discussion, and breaks. Past experience
suggests that workshops otherwise degrade into mini-conferences as
talks begin to run over. For the same reason, we strongly recommend
that each workshop include no more than 12 talks per day.

The proposal should motivate why the topic is of interest or
controversial, why it should be discussed, and who the targeted group
of participants is. It also should include a brief resume of the
prospective workshop chair with a list of publications to establish
scholarship in the field. We encourage workshops that build,
continue, or arise from one or more workshops from previous
years. Please mention any such connections.

NIPS does not provide travel funding for workshop speakers. In the
past, some workshops have sought and received funding from external
sources to bring in outside speakers. In addition, the organizers of
each accepted workshop can name up to four people (six people for
2-day workshops) to receive discounted registration for the workshop

Submissions should include the name, address, email address, phone and
fax numbers for all organizers. If there is more than one organizer,
please designate one organizer as the primary contact.

Proposals should be emailed as plain text to Please do not use attachments,
Microsoft Word, postscript, html, or pdf files. Questions may be
addressed to

Information about the main conference and the workshop program can be
found at

	 Barak A. Pearlmutter, University of New Mexico
	 Robert A. Jacobs, University of Rochester
		 NIPS*2002 Workshops Co-Chairs

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Message 2: 2nd CFP Workshop - 'EXISTENCE: Semantics and Syntax', Nancy, France

Date: Sun, 05 May 2002 23:38:41 +0200
From: Ileana Comorovski <>
Subject: 2nd CFP Workshop - 'EXISTENCE: Semantics and Syntax', Nancy, France


 EXISTENCE : Semantics and Syntax

 September 26-28, 2002
 Nancy, France

The conference will be structured around two themes: i) the
interpretation of the verb "be" and of the constructions in which "be"
occurs, and ii) the existential binding of indefinites. Both themes
are related to the notion of existence and one purpose of the
conference is to explore possible connections between these
themes. The conference will center on the formal syntax and semantics
of existence, with a special session on computational treatments of
existence constructions.


General session:

 Francis Corblin (Paris)
 Bart Geurts (Nijmegen)
 Fred Landman (Tel Aviv)
 James McCloskey (Santa Cruz)
 Barbara Partee (Amherst)

Special session:
 Patrick Blackburn (Nancy)

Abstracts are invited for 30-minute presentations (plus 10 minutes
discussion) on all subjects relevant to the conference and in
particular on the following topics:

- The semantics of "be": how many interpretations? Is there evidence
across languages that verbs which correspond to "be" have more than
one interpretation? Predication in languages which have more than one
correspondent for "be" (e.g. Spanish).

- The syntax and semantics of constructions in which "be" occurs: the
"there-be" construction (and the definiteness effect), "it is NP",
"that is NP", various copular constructions across languages; clefts
and pseudo-clefts; auxiliary "be" and auxiliary selection.

- "Be"-existentials and "have"-existentials.

- Existence and negation.

- Sources of existential binding for the variable that indefinites
introduce in the logical representation. Syntactic asymmetries with
respect to the source of existential binding (e.g. the spatio-temporal
anchoring of the sentence as binder of indefinite subjects versus
semantic incorporation for indefinite objects). If indefinites
introduce a function variable, as has been argued by some in recent
years, how is this variable bound?

- Existential presupposition and degrees of (in)definiteness.

- Computational treatment (analysis and generation) of existence

The languages of the conference are English and French.


Electronic submission is greatly encouraged. Send a two-page anonymous
abstract to:

Please write 'existence' in the subject heading and the following
information in the body of the message: title of paper, author's name,
affiliation, postal address, e-mail address, and telephone
number. Please specify whether the abstract is for the general session
or for the special session. Abstracts may be sent as attached files in
Word, PDF, or .ps format, or as plain text. If E-mail submission is
not possible, abstracts can be mailed to the following address:

Colloque syntaxe/semantique
Casier 286
Universite de Nancy 2
23, Bd. Albert 1er
54015 Nancy

Send 5 anonymous copies of your abstract and provide the full author
information on a separate card. Please limit submissions to one
individual and one joint abstract per author.

DEADLINE for receipt of abstracts: MAY 20 , 2002.

Notification of acceptance: July 1, 2002.


David Beaver (Stanford), Ileana Comorovski (Nancy 2), Claire Gardent
(CNRS-Nancy), Bart Geurts (Nijmegen), Daniele Godard (CNRS-Paris 7),
Caroline Heycock (Edinburgh), Helen de Hoop (Nijmegen), Jacques Jayez
(ENS-Lyon), Georges Kleiber (Strasbourg 2), Brenda Laca (Paris 8),
James McCloskey (Santa Cruz), Haihua Pan (Hong Kong), Barbara Partee
(Amherst), Georges Rebuschi (Paris 3), Roger Schwarzschild (Rutgers),
Lucia Tovena (Lille 3), Karina Wilkinson (Rutgers), Henk Zeevat


Ileana Comorovski
Dept. de Sciences du langage
Universite de Nancy 2

Claire Gardent

Conference web site:

Questions about the conference can be addressed to the organizers: or


 S�mantique et Syntaxe
 26-28 Septembre 2002
 Nancy, France

La conf�rence s'articulera autour de deux grands th�mes : (i)
l'interpr�tation du verbe "�tre" et des constructions le faisant intervenir,
et (ii) le liage existentiel des ind�finis. Ces deux th�mes renvoient � la
notion d'existence et un objectif de la conf�rence est d'explorer les
connexions possibles entre ces th�mes. La conf�rence sera centr�e sur la
syntaxe et la s�mantique formelle de l'existence, avec une session sp�ciale
sur le traitement computationel des constructions existentielles.

Conf�renciers invit�s :

Session g�n�rale :
 Francis Corblin (Paris)
 Bart Geurts (Nijmegen)
 Fred Landman (Tel Aviv)
 James McCloskey (Santa Cruz)
 Barbara Partee (Amherst)
Session sp�ciale :
 Patrick Blackburn (Nancy)

Nous invitons � soumettre des r�sum�s pour des pr�sentations de 30 minutes
(suivies de 10 minutes de discussion) dans tous les domaines pertinents et
en particulier sur les questions suivantes:
- La s�mantique de "�tre": combien d'interpr�tations? Y a-t'il des donn�es
inter-linguistiques justifiant plusieurs interpr�tations pour "�tre"?
Pr�dication dans les langues qui ont plus d'un �quivalent pour "�tre" (e.g.
- La syntaxe et la s�mantique de constructions dans lesquelles "�tre"
appara�t: "c'est SN", "ceci est SN" et autres constructions copulatives �
travers les langues; clivages et pseudo-clivages; l'auxiliaire "�tre" et
s�lection de l'auxiliaire.
- Constructions existentielles en "�tre" et constructions existentielles en
- Existence et n�gation.
- Sources de liage existentiel pour la variable introduite par les ind�finis
dans la repr�sentation logique. Asym�tries syntaxiques par rapport � la
source de liage existentiel (e.g. l'ancrage spatio-temporel d'une phrase
comme lieur des sujets ind�finis versus l'incorporation s�mantique des
objets ind�finis). Si, comme il l'a �t� propos� au cours des derni�res
ann�es, les ind�finis introduisent une variable fonctionnelle, comment cette
variable est-elle li�e?
- Pr�supposition existentielle et degr�s de (in)d�finitude.
- Traitement informatique (analyse et g�n�ration) des constructions

Les langues de la conf�rence seront le fran�ais et l'anglais.


Les soumissions �lectroniques sont encourag�es. Les r�sum�s de deux pages
anonymes seront envoy�s � :

La ligne "sujet" de votre message devra sp�cifier le mot cl� "existence"
tandis que le corps du message sp�cifiera les informations suivantes : titre
de l'article, nom(s) du/des auteur(s), affiliation(s), adresse(s)
postal(es), adresse(s) email et num�ro(s) de t�l�phone. Le corps du message
sp�cifiera �galement si le r�sum� est soumis pour la session g�n�rale ou la
session sp�ciale. Les r�sum�s seront envoy�s en fichiers attach�s en format
Word, PDF, .ps ou ascii.

Si la soumission �lectronique est impossible, le r�sum� peut �tre envoy� �
l'adresse suivante:

Colloque syntaxe/s�mantique
Casier 286
Universit� de Nancy 2
23, Bd. Albert 1er
54015 Nancy

Dans ce cas, l'envoi devra contenir 5 copies anonymes du r�sum�. Les
informations concernant le/les auteur(s) seront fournies sur une feuille
s�par�e. Merci de ne pas soumettre plus d'un article co-sign� et un article

DATE LIMITE de r�ception des propositions de communication : 20 MAI 2002

Notification aux auteurs : 1 Juillet 2002.


David Beaver (Stanford), Ileana Comorovski (Nancy 2), Claire Gardent
(CNRS-Nancy), Bart Geurts (Nijmegen), Dani�le Godard (CNRS-Paris 7),
Caroline Heycock (Edinburgh), Helen de Hoop (Nijmegen), Jacques Jayez
(ENS-Lyon), Georges Kleiber (Strasbourg 2), Brenda Laca (Paris 8), James
McCloskey (Santa Cruz), Haihua Pan (Hong Kong), Barbara Partee (Amherst),
Georges Rebuschi (Paris 3), Roger Schwarzschild (Rutgers), Lucia Tovena
(Lille 3), Karina Wilkinson (Rutgers), Henk Zeevat (Amsterdam).


Ileana Comorovski
D�pt. de Sciences du langage
Universit� de Nancy 2

Claire Gardent


Pour toute question concernant la conf�rence, merci de s'adresser aux
organisatrices : ou
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