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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Faculty of Language, Literature and Humanities

Research Unit


Artemis Alexiadou

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Preis 2014


This research group studies the human language faculty within the generative approach. This approach aims to identify the basic elements from which complex structures can be generated. The aim is to develop a general theory that reveals the rules and laws that govern the structure of particular languages, and the general laws and principles governing all natural languages. Generative grammar assumes that there is a dedicated human language ability, Universal Grammar, which is best studied through formalized models and theories. From this perspective, discovering the rules of language tells us something about human cognition.

The primary focus and contribution of my team has been on theoretical modeling, i.e. providing the computational mechanisms that constitute human language. The Leibniz Prize will enable me to combine expertise in theoretical modeling with cutting-edge experimental methodology and work with multilingual speakers. This will be instrumental in testing the efficiency of linguistic models and promoting our understanding of language and cognition.



  • CIALT2 in Berlin

Together with the University of Crete RUESHel is organizing the 2nd Conference on Interdisciplinary Approaches to Linguistic Theory. The conference will take place at HU's Jacob-und-Wilhelm-Grimm-Zentrum, October 25-27, 2018. Find out more.

  • Doctoral dissertation defense

On October 31, 2018, Nils Hirsch will defend his doctoral dissertation 'German psych verbs – insights from a decompositional perspective' at Humboldt-Universty Berlin.

  • DeMiNes workshop in Berlin

On October 12, 2018, RUESHeL is co-hosting the workshop of the German-Mediterranean Network for Linguistics (DeMiNes) at Humboldt University of Berlin. Please see the website for more details, which is available here.

  • ConSOLE 2019 to take place in Berlin

The graduate students of RUESHeL are proud to announce that they will host the 27th Conference of the Student Organisation of Linguistics in Europe (ConSOLE). The conference will take place in Berlin, February 21-23, 2019. Check out the conference page.


  • Humboldt Research Award

We congratulate Prof. Louise McNally (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona) who is currently visiting our group to be awared with the Humboldt Research Award.

  • Artemis Alexiadou elected member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters

We are pleased to announce that Prof. Alexiadou, head of the RUESHeL group, has been elected a member of the prestigious Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. We congratulate Prof. Alexiadou on this honour.