LINGUIST List 32.220

Thu Jan 14 2021

Support: Linguistic Theories; Pragmatics; Semantics: PhD, Georg August Universität Göttingen

Editor for this issue: Becca Morris <>

Date: 14-Jan-2021
From: Clemens Mayr <>
Subject: Linguistic Theories; Pragmatics; Semantics: PhD, Georg August Universität Göttingen, Germany
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Department: Department of English, Department of German
Web Address:

Level: PhD

Institution/Organization: Georg August Universität Göttingen

Duties: Research

Specialty Areas: Linguistic Theories; Pragmatics; Semantics


The Linguistics sections of the Department of English and the Department of German at the University of Göttingen are looking to fill the position of a Research Assistant (PhD position) with 65% of the regular working hours (currently 25.9 hours per week) and a limited contract of 3 years. This position should be filled by July 1, 2021. Salary: Pay grade 13 TV-L.

Your duties:
- You contribute to the research within the DFG-funded part of the AHRC-DFG project "Interactions between Dynamic Effects and Alternative-Based Inferences in the Study of Meaning" (IDEAlISM).
- This research involves the preparation and finishing of a PhD thesis.

Your profile:
- You hold a highly qualified MA-degree (or the equivalent to that in the country where you graduated) with a focus on “formal semantics/pragmatics”, and
- have excellent knowledge of English.
- Knowledge of theoretical linguistics more broadly is an asset, so is acquaintance with experimental methods.
- Priority will be given to applicants with a strong interest in gesture and/or sign languages.

The project:
IDEAlISM is concerned with the division of labour between semantics and pragmatics, and in particular with the interaction of dynamic effects (DEs) and alternative-based inferences (ABIs). This interaction is non-trivial insofar as taking a particular dynamic perspective has immediate consequences for which alternative-based perspective one needs to take and vice versa. Besides formal, theoretical work, IDEAlISM carries out experimental research by adopting a broad variety of experimental measures for its data collection, thereby promising exciting new insights. Moreover, it extends the empirical coverage of semantic and pragmatic theories beyond simple spoken language by taking a cross-modal view. It does so by investigating the influence of gesture on DEs and ABIs and their visualisation in sign languages. For more information refer to

The research environment within the project:
IDEAlISM is led by Clemens Mayr (Göttingen, PI) and Yasutada Sudo (UCL, PI), and further involves Richard Breheny (UCL), Cornelia Ebert (University of Frankfurt), Jacopo Romoli (University of Bergen), and Markus Steinbach (Göttingen). The PhD candidate will be based in Göttingen and will be advised by Steinbach and Steiner-Mayr. In addition, there will be ample opportunity to interact with the other project members, including the Post-doc to be hired between Frankfurt and UCL. The candidate will be encouraged to have at least one external advisor from among the larger group. The international collaboration will enable the candidate to spend some time abroad. Moreover, there will be the chance to interact with the members of the advisory board for the project: Sigrid Beck (University of Tübingen), Gennaro Chierchia (Harvard), Vadim Kimmelman (University of Bergen), Angelika Kratzer (UMass at Amherst), Josep Quer (Pompeu Fabra University), Daniel Rothschild (UCL), Philippe Schlenker (ENS, NYU), and Bencie Woll (UCL).

The research environment at the Georg-August Universität Göttingen:
The lively linguistics community at the University of Göttingen, Linguistics in Göttingen (LinG), has an international outlook and a strong focus on theoretical linguistics. See for more information on LinG. September 2021 will, moreover, see the start of a new DFG-funded research training group (RTG) on Form-Meaning Mismatches. There is the opportunity for the PhD candidate to become a fully associated student of this RTG. This means they will be able to take part in the classes within the RTG and any other scheduled events and, moreover, will have full access to the teaching staff of the RTG. The research topic of IDEAlISM lends itself nicely to the topic of the RTG. For more information on the RTG see

How to apply:
Send your application materials including:
- A letter of motivation,
- Academic CV,
- An outline of the prospective topic for the thesis describing its fit for the project, and the RTG if applicable (max. 2 pages)
- A writing sample (e.g. BA/MA thesis),
- Contact information of two persons for references

by email to the apllication email provided below. The deadline for submission of applications is February 15, 2021.

For questions, contact Markus Steinbach (, or Clemens Mayr (

The University of Göttingen is an equal opportunities employer and places particular emphasis on fostering career opportunities for women. Qualified women are therefore strongly encouraged to apply in fields in which they are underrepresented. The university has committed itself to being a family-friendly institution and supports their employees balancing work and family life. The mission of the University is to employ a greater number of severely disabled persons. Applications from severely disabled persons with equivalent qualifications will be given preference.

Application Deadline: 15-Feb-2021

Email Address for Applications:

Contact Information:
        Prof. Clemens Mayr

Page Updated: 15-Jan-2021