Complex Systems in Linguistics Workshop, 5 Sept 2011

A Workshop on Complex Systems in Linguistics will be taking place on 5th September 2011 at the University of Southampton, UK. The workshop that aims to bring together researchers working with various conceptions of complexity in the study of language. In particular, the workshop organisers aim to explore the different ways in which concepts from complexity science may bear upon linguistic theories, and to reach out to researchers within complex systems more generally. The workshop is intended to provide a cooperative, constructive and collaborative environment; we invite and welcome exploratory and speculative papers, particularly where they may lead to advancing methodologies and understanding beyond existing paradigm boundaries.


The Workshop on Complex Systems in Linguistics will take place at the University of Southampton on Monday 5th September 2011. It will take place at the main Highfield campus, in building 2. The room is on Level 1, Lecture Theatre B (room number 02/1083) - Please note the room change from previous instructions. Building 2 can be found on the Highfield campus map at:

The city of Southampton and the University are very well served by road and rail links.  Southampton International airport is situated on the outskirts of the city. Full information can be found on the University’s “Getting Here” page:



In order to plan for numbers, and since the main lecture theatre has a limited capacity, all participants at the workshop are asked to ‘pre-register’ in order to confirm their participation by email, before Thursday 18th August. Please complete this registration form and email it to as soon as possible.  Participants who are not presenting a paper at the workshop are asked to pay a fee of £15 to contribute towards the cost of their food and refreshments during the day. This can be paid in cash at registration on the morning of the workshop.  Registration will take place on-site on the morning of the workshop, from 9am.  



Presentations will last approximately 30 minutes (40 for the invited talks), plus a short discussion/question period. The invited papers are from Cedric Boeckx (Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats/Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona), and an invited session with papers by Diane Larsen-Freeman (University of Michigan) and Philip Herdina (Universität Innsbruck). Click here for the full finalised programme; approximate details are below.


9:00 - 9:50am                                                     Registration and coffee

Cedric Boeckx                                                  Syntax Santa Fe style

Leah Bauke                                                       How complex is Merge?

David Medeiros                                                X-bar structure and the Golden String

Lluís Barceló i Coblijn & Antoni Gomila      Syntactic development at 25 months: a critical phase

                                                                            transition  of grammatical rule induction

1:10 - 2:30                                                          Lunch

Diane Larsen-Freeman                                   Complexity Theory: Opening new spaces

Philip Herdina                                                  What Complexity Theory can do for language research

Glyn Hicks & Matthew Reeve                         Complexity and/or Minimalism(?)

5:30pm                                                                 Workshop finishes. Evening meal in Southampton



Since this is a single day workshop we will not be offering an accommodation package - we invite workshop participants to arrange their own local accommodation should they need it; there is plenty available around Southampton and the University. Some suggestions are listed here; note that has reduced rates for most of these.

Elizabeth House Hotel:

Highfield House Hotel:

Jurys Inn:

Southampton Park Hotel:


Food and Refreshments

Lunch and coffee/tea (during breaks) will be provided on the day at no additional cost.


Please email Glyn Hicks ( or Matthew Reeve ( for any further details.