Current interactional linguistic research appears to be crystallizing around systematic themes, which are all represented in this collection of papers. In the first section, where the relation between language and interaction is viewed from the perspective of language structure, several articles deal with the potential of a single structure for both turn and sequence construction, revealing a play-off between planned and occasioned syntax with potentially far-reaching consequences for language development. Other articles deal with lexical expressions as resources for the conduct of interaction, showing how they are heavily dependent on turn position and sequential context for their meaning potential. In the second section, with a view from the perspective of the interactional order, a systematic focus of interest lies on three different conversational tasks: projecting turn and turn-unit completion, starting up turns with 'non-beginnings' and self-repairing. The cross-linguistic studies here all agree that common interactional tasks may well be carried out by quite different linguistic practices and that these practices are dependent to a certain extent on language features which are typologically distinct.