Constraint-Based Modelling of Information Structure in German, Spanish and French

Funding Body

DFG im Rahmen des SFB 632 (Projekt A6)

Principal Investigator

Stefan Müller

Funding Period

1.7.2011 until 30.06.2015

Research Team

Stefan Müller(German)
Felix Bildhauer(French, Spanish)
Philippa Cook(German)


The current project is a continuation of Project A6 / SFB632 (2009–2011), focusing on new aspects of information structure and covering Romance languages in addition to German. There are three main areas of investigation:

Theory and architecture of grammar: Modelling of interfaces between information structure and other components of grammar.

Non-canonical mappings between information structure and grammatical functions: Investigation of thetic/presentational sentences

Interaction of frequency/collocational effects with information structure: Focuses on such effects in the context of ditransitive constructions.

Our investigations will be based on naturally occurring data, i.e. corpus studies conducted in parallel for German, Spanish and French. In addition, we are planning to run a self-paced reading experiment in order to test our findings from area #3.

The empirical results will be taken as the basis of modular, multilingual grammar fragments of German, French, and Spanish in the framework of HPSG in which the modelled languages share a common core.


  • Philippa Cook & Felix Bildhauer (2013). Identifying "aboutness topics": two annotation experiments. Dialogue & Discourse 4(2), 118–141.
Publications from the second funding period of SFB 632


Presentations from the second funding period of SFB 632