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LINGUIST List 18.3821

Wed Dec 19 2007

Calls: Computational Ling,Semantics/Germany; General Ling/USA

Editor for this issue: Ania Kubisz <anialinguistlist.org>

As a matter of policy, LINGUIST discourages the use of abbreviations or acronyms in conference announcements unless they are explained in the text. To post to LINGUIST, use our convenient web form at http://linguistlist.org/LL/posttolinguist.html.
        1.    Alessandro Lenci, Distributional Lexical Semantics - ESSLLI 2008
        2.    Andrea Berez, Workshop on American Indigenous Languages

Message 1: Distributional Lexical Semantics - ESSLLI 2008
Date: 19-Dec-2007
From: Alessandro Lenci <alessandro.lenciilc.cnr.it>
Subject: Distributional Lexical Semantics - ESSLLI 2008
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Full Title: Distributional Lexical Semantics - ESSLLI 2008

Date: 04-Aug-2008 - 09-Aug-2008
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Contact Person: Alessandro Lenci
Meeting Email: lexsem08gmail.com
Web Site: http://wordspace.collocations.de/doku.php/data:start

Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science; Computational Linguistics;
Psycholinguistics; Semantics

Call Deadline: 04-Apr-2008

Meeting Description

Distributional Lexical Semantics:
Bridging the gap between semantic theory and computational simulations
Workshop at ESSLLI 2008, Hamburg, August 4-9 2008

Call for Expressions of Interest

Distributional Lexical Semantics:
Bridging the gap between semantic theory and computational simulations

Workshop at ESSLLI 2008, Hamburg, August 4-9 2008

Workshop page:

ESSLLI 2008 page:

Background and Motivation

Corpus-based distributional models (such as LSA or HAL) have been claimed to
capture interesting aspects of word meaning and provide an explanation for the
rapid acquisition of semantic knowledge by human language learners. However,
although these models have been proposed as plausible simulations of human
semantic space organization, careful and extensive empirical tests of such
claims are still lacking.

Systematic evaluations typically focus on large-scale quantitative tasks, often
more oriented towards engineering applications (see, e.g., the recent SEMEVAL
evaluation campaign) than towards the challenges posed by linguistic theory,
philosophy and cognitive science. This has resulted in a great divide between
corpus-driven computational approaches to semantics on the one hand and
theory-driven symbolic approaches on the other - a situation that is
characteristic of the linguistic and of most of the cognitive
tradition. Moreover, whereas human lexical semantic competence is obviously
multi-faceted - ranging from free association to taxonomic judgments to
relational effects - tests of distributional models tend to focus on a single
aspect (most typically the detection of semantic similarity), and few if any
models have been tuned to tackle different facets of semantics in an integrated

Our workshop purports to fill these gaps by inviting research teams and
individual scholars to test their computational models on a variety of small but
carefully designed tasks that aim to bring out linguistically and cognitively
interesting aspects of semantics (see below for details). To this effect,
annotated datasets will be distributed to the participants, who are encouraged
to explore them and highlight interesting aspects of their models' performance,
conduct quantitative and qualitative error analysis, etc.

Tasks and Data Sets

Small annotated data sets will be distributed to participants, who are invited
to apply their computational models and conduct a thorough analysis of the
results. The goal is not to achieve better precision than competitors, but to
understand the strengths and weaknesses of individual models, analyze and
explain errors, etc. Theoretical discussions of the data sets from a linguistic
or cognitive perspective are also invited and will complement the empirical

Ongoing work on data set preparation can be monitored at

If you would like to contribute to the data sets or participate in our
discussion, please send and expression of interest to lexsem08gmail.com.

We would particularly appreciate expressions of interest sent before late
January 2008. We will keep interested parties up-to-date by email.

Currently, we plan to offer the following tasks:

- concrete nouns categorization
- abstract/concrete nouns discrimination
- verb categorization

modelling free association
- correlation with free association norms

generation of salient properties of concepts
- comparison with speaker-generated features

possibly, one task to test semantic compositionality

Important Dates (tentative)

- Late January 2008: Data-sets available on Workshop website
- April 4, 2008: Paper submission deadline
- April 24, 2008: Notification
- August 4-9, 2008: Workshop in Hamburg (during the first week of ESSLLI)

Programme Committee

Marco Baroni (University of Trento) (co-organizer)
Reinhard Blutner (University of Amsterdam)
Gemma Boleda (UPF, Barcelona)
Peter Bosch (University of Osnabrück)
Paul Buitelaar (DFKI, Saarbrücken)
John Bullinaria (University of Birmingham)
Katrin Erk (UT, Austin)
Stefan Evert (University of Osnabrück) (co-organizer)
Patrick Hanks (Masaryk University, Brno)
Anna Korhonen (Cambridge University)
Michiel van Lambalgen (University of Amsterdam)
Alessandro Lenci (University of Pisa) (co-organizer)
Claudia Maienborn (University of Tübingen)
Simonetta Montemagni (ILC-CNR, Pisa)
Rainer Osswald (University of Hagen)
Manfred Pinkal (University of Saarland)
Massimo Poesio (University of Trento)
Reinhard Rapp (University of Mainz)
Magnus Sahlgren (SICS, Kista)
Sabine Schulte im Walde (University of Stuttgart)
Manfred Stede (University of Potsdam)
Suzanne Stevenson (University of Toronto)
Peter Turney (NRC Canada, Ottawa)
Tim Van de Cruys (University of Groningen)
Gabriella Vigliocco (University College, London)
Chris Westbury (University of Alberta)
Message 2: Workshop on American Indigenous Languages
Date: 17-Dec-2007
From: Andrea Berez <aberezumail.ucsb.edu>
Subject: Workshop on American Indigenous Languages
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Full Title: Workshop on American Indigenous Languages
Short Title: WAIL

Date: 23-May-2008 - 24-May-2008
Location: Santa Barbara, California, USA
Contact Person: Joye Kiester
Meeting Email: wail.ucsbgmail.com
Web Site: http://orgs.sa.ucsb.edu/nailsg/index.html

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics

Call Deadline: 08-Feb-2008

Meeting Description

The Linguistics department at the University of California, Santa Barbara
announces its 11th annual Workshop on American Indigenous Languages (WAIL),
which provides a forum for the discussion of theoretical and descriptive studies
of the indigenous languages of the Americas.

2nd Call for Papers

Anonymous abstracts are invited for talks on any topic in linguistics. Talks
will be 20 minutes, followed by 10 minutes for discussion. Abstracts should be
500 words or less (excluding examples and/or references) and can be submitted by
hard copy or email. Individuals may submit abstracts for one single-authored and
one co-authored paper. Please indicate your source(s) and type(s) of data in the
abstract (e.g. recordings, texts, conversational, elicited, narrative, etc.).
For co-authored papers, please indicate who plans to present the paper as well
as who will be in attendance.

Special Panel on Language Policy: This year we are welcoming abstracts for a
Special Panel on all issues concerning language policy. Talks will be 20 minutes
each, followed by a group discussion/question-and-answer period.

For email submissions: Include the abstract as an attachment. Please limit your
abstracts to the following formats: PDF, RTF, or Microsoft Word document.

Include the following information in the body of the email message: (1) your
name; (2) affiliation; (3) mailing address; (4) phone number; (5) email address;
(6) title of your paper; (7) whether your submission is for the general session
or the Special Panel.

Send email submissions to: wail.ucsbgmail.com

For hard copy submissions: Please send four copies of your abstract, along with
a 3x5 card with the following information: (1) your name; (2) affiliation; (3)
mailing address; (4) phone number; (5) email address; (6) title of your paper;
(7) whether your submission is for the general session or the Special Panel.

Send hard copy submissions to: Workshop on American Indigenous Languages
Attn: Joye Kiester or Verónica Muñoz Ledo
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106

Deadline for Receipt of Abstracts
February 8, 2008
Notification of acceptance will be by email no later than February 29, 2008.

General Information: Santa Barbara is situated on the Pacific Ocean near the
Santa Yñez Mountains. The UCSB campus is located near the Santa Barbara airport.
Participants may also fly into LAX airport in Los Angeles, which is
approximately 90 miles southeast of the campus. Shuttle buses run between LAX
and Santa Barbara. Information about hotel accommodations will be posted on our
website (http://orgs.sa.ucsb.edu/nailsg/).

For further information contact the conference coordinators, Joye Kiester and
Verónica Muñoz Ledo, at wail.ucsbgmail.com or (805) 893-3776, or check out our
website at http://orgs.sa.ucsb.edu/nailsg/

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