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InterAccent SIGNED

Human interaction and the evolution of spoken accent

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 InterAccent project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the InterAccent project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "InterAccent" about.

differ    communities    critical    predictive    desert    deficiency    observations    diverse    sounds    idiosyncrasies    methodological    data    migration    develops    historical    input    framework    accents    area    structure    innovation    groups    lack    limited    rural    interaction    everyday    individuals    adults    sound    remedies    conversations    speaking    scientific    markedly    humans    changing    speakers    winter    longitudinal    accumulate    communicated    constrained    social    children    computational    ultimately    urban    exposure    language    breakthrough    significance    forces    microscopic    mechanisms    random    isolated    months    seek    remote    local    island    outside    if    actually    patterns    computationally    meant    period    evolutionary    settings    model    predictions    speech    languages    opposed    stranded    push    macroscopic    contact    diversification    shape    unifying    cognitive    accent    antarctic    stable    poor    types    group    interactions    people    human    explaining    emerges    generalise    suitable    time   

Project "InterAccent" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 80539

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Germany [DE]
 Total cost 2˙499˙333 €
 EC max contribution 2˙499˙333 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2016-ADG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2017
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2017-10-01   to  2022-09-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

If a group of people were stranded on a desert island with limited contact to outside communities for a period of time, then the group would develop its own characteristic way of speaking or spoken accent. A lack of suitable data as input to an evolutionary computational model has meant that we have but a poor understanding of how spoken accent emerges out of human interaction. Yet a breakthrough in this area is critical for explaining the various forces - including contact between individuals through increased migration - that shape spoken accent development ultimately leading to language diversification and change. The project remedies this deficiency by developing a model of how random, local interactions between individuals leading to group-specific spoken accents can push the sound patterns of languages between stable and changing states. The methodological innovation is that the model's predictions of how spoken accent evolves will be constrained by longitudinal observations about how it actually develops within a group of speakers over time. We seek to generalise from diverse types of data: from children growing up in remote rural communities as opposed to high-contact urban settings; from languages that differ markedly in their sound structure; and from groups of adults isolated together for several months during an Antarctic winter. The project's scientific impact is on developing a computational framework for unifying historical sound change with the cognitive mechanisms by which speech is communicated and adapted to different social settings. The further impact is on understanding how migration and exposure to other accents change the sounds of language. The long-term significance of the project is to build a computationally predictive model of the way that microscopic idiosyncrasies in how humans process speech in everyday conversations accumulate into group-level macroscopic spoken accent change leading to language diversification.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2018 Jonathan Harrington, Felicitas Kleber, Ulrich Reubold, Florian Schiel, Mary Stevens
Linking Cognitive and Social Aspects of Sound Change Using Agent-Based Modeling
published pages: 707-728, ISSN: 1756-8757, DOI: 10.1111/tops.12329
Topics in Cognitive Science 10/4 2019-08-05
2018 Christopher Carignan
Using naïve listener imitations of native speaker productions to investigate mechanisms of listener-based sound change
published pages: 18, ISSN: 1868-6354, DOI: 10.5334/labphon.136
Laboratory Phonology: Journal of the Association for Laboratory Phonology 9/1 2019-08-05
2019 Mary Stevens, Jonathan Harrington, Florian Schiel
Associating the origin and spread of sound change using agent-based modelling applied to /s/-retraction in English
published pages: 8, ISSN: 2397-1835, DOI: 10.5334/gjgl.620
Glossa: a journal of general linguistics 4/1 2019-08-05
2018 Christopher Carignan
Using ultrasound and nasalance to separate oral and nasal contributions to formant frequencies of nasalized vowels
published pages: 2588-2601, ISSN: 0001-4966, DOI: 10.1121/1.5034760
The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 143/5 2019-08-05

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The information about "INTERACCENT" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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