Conference description
Boat trip and dinner
Conference venue
Call for papers

SWL I (2004)
SWL II (2006)

Syntax of the World's Languages III

Free University of Berlin, September 25-28, 2008

Conference description

The 'Syntax of the World's Languages' conference series provides a forum for linguists working on less widely studied languages or varieties of languages. Contributions are expected to be data-driven, preferentially based on first hand data. Comparative and diachronic papers are also highly welcome. The discussion of theoretical issues is appreciated to the extent that it helps to elucidate the data. The list of topics relevant to the conference includes:

  • interesting aspects of basic clause structure
  • argument structure (e.g. grammatical relations, diathesis, linking)
  • intra-clausal dependencies (e.g. agreement, binding)
  • inter-clausal dependencies (e.g. reference tracking, subordination)
  • the expression of information structure
  • interaction between syntax and other areas of grammar (morphology, phonology, semantics)

The use of specific syntactic frameworks is encouraged, but presentations should be understandable without prior knowledge of the relevant theory.

Invited speakers
Balthasar Bickel (Leipzig)
Denis Creissels (Lyon)
Manfred Krifka (Berlin)
Anna Siewierska (Lancaster)

Programme committee
Alexandra Aikhenvald (La Trobe)
Walter Bisang (Mainz)
Isabelle Bril (Paris)
Nick Evans (Melbourne)
Martin Haspelmath (Leipzig)
Elena Maslova (Stanford)
Robert Van Valin jr. (Düsseldorf)

Local organizing committee
Ekkehard König
Volker Gast
Florian Haas


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The programme is available here.

Given the considerable number of presentations (70-80), there will be three parallel sessions. Moreover, we have decided to assign each paper to one of eight subject areas:

  • Argument structure
  • Clause combining
  • Grammatical relations
  • Information structure
  • Nouns and pronouns
  • Syntax and semantics
  • Syntax in typological perspective
  • Word order and constituent structure

The abstracts are available in one file here (not fully up to date).

Boat trip and dinner

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The inevitable conference dinner will take place on a boat cruising the river Spree (click here for a picture of the boat). The boat features a small stage and we will provide for instruments, esp. one or two (electric) guitars and a microphone. One participant (a celebrated linguist-musician) has already agreed to perform a couple of songs. If you think your singing is good enough to entertain a linguistic audience, please contact us and we will find a slot for you in the 'musical parasession' of the conference.

The fee for the dinner is € 40,- (cf. also the registration form).

Conference Venue

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Freie Universität Berlin
Habelschwerdter Allee 45
14195 Berlin

Click here for a map.

For public transport directions click here (English) or here (German). Choose 'Thielplatz' as the target station. There will be direction signs to the conference venue.


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There will be a major exhibition taking place at the time of our conference (InnoTrans). Please make sure to book early!

We recommend either booking a hotel near the conference venue or one close to a station of subway line U3, which takes you directly to the conference venue (for € 2,10).

Approximate indication of prices:
Hotel****€90,- -- €120,-
***€70,- -- €100,-
**€50,- -- €80,-
*€30,- -- €60,-
€20,- -- €50,-
Hostel€10,- -- €30,-

Hotels near conference venue

Best Western ****
Ravenna Hotel ***
Hotel Haus Leopold ***
Hotel Dahlem (econ.)

Hotels near subway line to conference venue (U3)

Hotel Delta ****
Hotel Air in Berlin ***
Hotel Altberlin ***
Ambassador ***
Sylter Hof Berlin ***
Winter's Hotel Berlin**/***
Hotel Pension Spree
City Hotel Ansbach
Berliner Hof am Tauentzien

Budget accommodation

Jetpak Original (near conference venue)
Jetpak City Hostel (near U3)
Berlin Youth Hostel International
A&O Hostels
Meininger City Hostels

More information (plus online booking system)

BTM Berlin Tourismus Marketing
General Accommodation Finder
Phone: +49-30-250025 (national)
Phone: +49-1805-75 40 40 (international)
Fax: +49-30-264748988

You can search here for hotels (recommended 'City area/District': South/Zehlendorf or Steglitz or City West).


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Registration fees

By bank transfer (before August 30):   € 30,-
By cash (on site):   € 40,-

Conference dinner (optional):   € 40,-

Reduced rates are possible for participants with limited financial resources, e.g. those without a regular income; please contact us if you think you belong in this group.

Members of the programme committee and those participants who have received a travel grant from us do not have to pay the registration fee.

Please transfer the appropriate amount of money to the following account (€ 30,- without dinner, € 70 with dinner):

Account holderEkkehard König
Account number721 293 901
Bank code100 700 24
BankDeutsche Bank 24
Drakestr. 33A
12205 Berlin

Please provide the following information.

Last name
First name
Conference dinner (€ 40,-)yesno

Please type the letters on the right into the field below and press the 'Submit'-button:

Call for papers

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Abstracts of no more than one page (plus one additional page for examples) should be sent to before January 31, 2008. Papers should be anonymous and refrain from self-reference. Please provide contact details and the title of your presentation in the body of the email.


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Deadline for abstract submission: January 31, 2008
Notification of acceptance: March 31, 2008


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Conference email:
Contact persons: Volker Gast
Florian Haas
Free University of Berlin
English Department
Habelschwerdter Allee 45
D-14195 Berlin




Volker Gast
Last modified: Sun Oct 19 18:31:23 MEST 2008