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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Level: PhD
Duty: Research
Linguistic Field: Linguistic Theories
Morphology
Phonology
Syntax
Application Deadline: 15-Jan-2014
Supporting Institution: University of Leipzig
Linguistics
LL Issue: 24.4759
Posted: 26-Nov-2013
Support Description: The University of Leipzig, Germany, offers full funding for 8 PhD candidates who wish to obtain a PhD in any area of syntax, morphology and/or phonology and their interfaces. These 8 PhD positions will be part of the newly approved graduate program "Interaction of Grammatical Building Blocks" (IGRA) (http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~igra), funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).

Each PhD position is funded for 3 years, with social benefits (payscale: 0.5 TVL-E13), and will consist of a combination of course-work (with courses taught by Leipzig faculty and by internationally renowned guest scholars from elsewhere) and independent research. Students will also have the opportunity to conduct extended research stays at leading linguistic institutions abroad, and will have access to travel money for conferences and summer schools.

The central research focus of IGRA is on the phonology, morphology, and syntax of natural languages. Recent developments in grammatical theory have accumulated an impressive body of knowledge about the representations of linguistic expressions of varying complexity, and about the grammatical building blocks (rules, operations, constraints, schemata, extralinguistic factors) that restrict their distributions. In addition, there are some plausible hypotheses as to how these building blocks interact with one another. However, what is so far lacking is a comprehensive and systematic investigation of the possible interactions of grammatical building blocks from different theoretical perspectives, on the basis of detailed empirical studies of phonological, morphological, and syntactic phenomena from an array of typologically diverse languages. It is the primary goal of the graduate programme to address this gap.

The dissertations carried out under this programme will pursue empirical research based on different grammatical models (and potentially also on combinations thereof), among them Minimalism, Optimality Theory, Rule-Based phonology, Distributed Morphology, Lexical Decomposition Grammar, Construction Grammar, Framework-Free Grammatical Theory, Minimalist Morphology, Paradigm-Function Morphology. The programme thus offers PhD candidates the unique opportunity of conducting linguistic research in an academically rigorous environment that is not pre-biased toward one or other theoretical framework but offers exposure to a diverse range of theoretical perspectives. Detailed information about the research programme, including a list of the programme's faculty and a list of potential dissertation topics, can be found here: http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~igra.

Application Requirements:
Students from international backgrounds are particularly encouraged to apply. (Teaching will be in English.) Applicants should have an M.A. in linguistics, or equivalent, with degree in hand latest by April 1, 2014.

Programme start: April 1, 2014

Supporting documents:
- statement of purpose (1-2 pages) that clarifies the research interests of the applicant, in particular detailing how these would fit in with the broader research goals of the PhD programme; this can be in English or German;
- representative sample of research work (e.g. an advanced seminar paper or M.A. thesis): in English or German;
- two letters of recommendation;
- Curriculum Vitae (CV);
- copy of M.A. degree (to be handed in latest by April 1, 2014, if not already available by Jan. 15, 2014).

All supporting documents for the application should be emailed electronically as pdf files (the M.A. degree to be scanned in) to Prof. Gereon Mueller at: gereon.mueller Linguist List uni-leipzig.de (subject line: igra). The recommendation letters should be emailed directly to this address by the referees.
Application Mailing Address: Prof. Dr. Gereon Mueller Beethovenstr. 15 Leipzig 04107 Germany
Application Web Address: http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~igra
Contact Information: Gereon Mueller gereon.mueller@uni-leipzig.de