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School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Current and Recent Grants

Devyani Sharma (QMUL), Paul Kerswill (York), Kathleen McCarthy (QMUL), Sam Hellmuth (York)

This project builds on prior research between colleagues at QMUL and York which established the existence of Multicultural London English as an emerging new variety of English in the UK.

The project take will advantage of a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity to capture the evolution of this new speech variety in real time, yielding a unique large-scale corpus of speech data. We’ll also build on our earlier collaboration in Accent Bias Britain to tackle the potential impact of public perceptions of changing language features on the life chances of speakers of different accents.


Luisa Martí (QMUL)

Languages like English and Turkish have singular and plural nouns. Why, then, do you say three boys in English, with a plural noun, but üç (three) çocuk (boy) ('three boy') in Turkish, with a singular noun? How do languages with dual nouns, such as Slovenian or Imere, say two boys, and why? This project looks at patterns of numeral-noun combinations across languages and uncovers the basic primitives of number marking (singular, plural, dual, etc.) that are responsible for...

Funded by a Leverhulme Trust research fellowship (2023-24)



Linnaea Stockall (QMUL), Christina Manouilidou (Ljubljana), Alec Marantz (NYU/NYUAD)

The project brings together a global team of researchers to explore how speakers detect, recognise and interpret constituent pieces of complex words.

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, with additional support from the NeLLab operating grant at NYU/NYUAD


A collaborative project with colleagues from McGill University’s Language Acquisition Research Group, University of Albertam, and University of Essex.

The project investigates the effects of linguistic environment on cognitive plasticity and language acquisition.

Funded by Fonds de recherche du Québec


Coppe van Urk (QMUL), and Luisa Martí (QMUL)

Funded by the British Academy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant

Adam Chong (QMUL), and James Sneed German (Aix-Marseille Université)
Funded by the British Academy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant

Esther de Leeuw (QMUL), Enkeleida Kapia (Akademia e Studimeve Albanologjike)

Funded by the British Academy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant

Jennifer Culbertson (Edinburgh), David Adger (QMUL), Klaus Abels (UCL)

This project will shed light on whether there are universal cognitive biases in language learning, if such biases are at play for particular phenomena, and how people's native languages affect these biases.

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, 2018-2020


Erez Levon (Bern), Devyani Sharma (QMUL), Dominic Watt (York), and Christina Perry (QMUL Law)

The aim of the project is to investigate attitudes to regional accents in Britain today, and the effects that accent bias may or may not have on access to the professions among speakers of different varieties of English in the UK. Combining methods from Linguistics, Psychology, and Economics, the project will focus on the role of accent and other speech factors in people's ability to judge competence in hiring contexts, both members of the public and recruiters in law firms in London and Leeds.

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, 2017-2019


Jennifer Smith (Glasgow), David Adger (QMUL), Caroline Heycock (Edinburgh)

Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, 2015-2019


Linnaea Stockall (QMUL), David Adger (QMUL), Jenny Cheshire (QMUL), and Hagit Borer (QMUL), together with colleagues at 16 other European institutions

This grant is to establish the AThEME consortium to study bilingualism and multilingualism in Europe.

Funded by the European Commission Collaborative Project Award, 2014-2019

Hazel Pearson

Funded by the Marie Curie Career Integration Grant, 2014-2018

Past grants:

Christos Vlachos (QMUL), and David Adger (QMUL)

The project investigated the way verbs in English and Greek select their clausal complements. Aside from its theoretical strand, the project includes experimental studies and public engagement activities.

Funded by Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, 2015-2017

Hagit Borer 

Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship, 2015-17

This award is to investigate the cross linguistic consequences of the syntactic architecture that Professor Borer lays out in her 3 volume Structuring Sense series. 

Alex Mesoudi (PI, Exeter), Devyani Sharma (QMUL), Peter McOwan (QMUL), Parvati Nair (QMUL)

Funded by a Economic Social Research Council grant, 2013-2016


Multicultural London English/Multicultural Paris French

Jenny Cheshire (QMUL), Penelope Gardner-Chloros (Birkbeck), Françoise Gadet (Université de Paris-Ouest)

Funded by ESRC/ANR, 2010-2014

Paul Elbourne

This research investigated the meaning of the word 'the' and related issues.

Funded by the Leverhulme Trust, 2010-2011

David Adger and Daniel Harbour

The ALEPH research project investigated the features that underly person and number systems.

Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, 2009-2013

Colleen Cotter (QMUL), Carlos Gussenhoven (QMUL, Radboud), and Hans Van de Velde (Utrecht)

In this collaborative project, the research team developed a corpus from which to investigate the ways in which intonation patterns in radio news broadcasts in British English and Netherlandic Dutch have changed over time. 

Funded by the British Academy

Carlos Gussenhoven

An international network project on Forms and Functions of Prosodic Structure. 

Funded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, 2008-2010

Jenny Cheshire 

The Multicultural London English research investigated the emergence of a new variety of English in London.


Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, October 2007-September 2010

Devyani Sharma

This research investigated English dialect variation and change within families of Indian origin in London.

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, January 2008-January 2010.

David Adger 

This research investigated the connection between meaning and grammar in Scottish Gaelic.

Funded by the Leverhulme Trust, September 2006-September 2009

This research investigated linguistic innovation among adolescents in London.

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, October 2004-September 2007

This research investigated information structure in Kiowa.

Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, April 2004-April 2007

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