Principal Investigator:

Eva Wittenberg

I am interested in how the mind assembles meaning, how this capacity came to be, and how it interacts with other cognitive abilities. I investigate the decisions that speakers face when they wrap their messages in grammar. Speakers make structural choices dozens of times per day, and listeners rapidly process them, make inferences about why something was said in a particular way, and create a representation of the speaker’s intended meaning in their minds.

Ph.D. students:

Elena Marx

In general, my research focuses on questions at the interface of event perception and language. I am interested in how temporal relations between events are perceived, how such relations are encoded by language and what the preconditions in temporal and event cognition are to understand and represent sequential relations between events. In this regard, I am looking into the developmental aspects of event cognition.

Ebru Evcen (based at UC San Diego)

Broadly speaking, I am interested in the issues at the interface between syntax, semantics, and pragmatics cross-linguistically. My research focuses on how, as language unfolds, we incrementally build representations of the events described by that unfolding language and how speakers develop a sufficiently rich linguistic meaning during comprehension. Currently, I am looking at how people interpret counterfactuals.