SFB Conference 2025

Conference on Rational Approaches in Language Science (RAILS)
13-15 February 2025, Saarbruecken, Germany

We are delighted to announce the upcoming 2nd edition of the conference on „Rational Approaches in Language Science“ (RAILS), which will be organized by the Collaborative Research Center (CRC) 1102 „Information Density and Linguistic Encoding“. The central theme of this conference is (bounded) rational communication, i.e. the idea that language users continuously strive to optimize their means of communication to effectively convey their intended messages. Thus, rational communication has consequences on how recipients encode and remember information, and it also impacts language variation and change.

RAILS will bring together researchers from various fields investigating how information dynamics, rational communication and memory interact with language use, variation, and change. We welcome contributions on (1) how interlocutors process and update information in diverse situational contexts; (2) how language use is adapted to certain contexts and intended referents and (3) how linguistic and conceptual information is stored and maintained in short- and long-term memory. Ultimately, the goal of the conference is to gain deeper insights into the complexities of language use and its dynamic nature in different settings. We invite submissions from researchers across the language sciences – including speech science, theoretical linguistics, empirical linguistics, psycholinguistics and neuroscience, computational linguistics, as well as language development, change and evolution – who apply rational probabilistic explanations to linguistic phenomena, or bring novel experimental findings to bear on such accounts.

Call for Submission

We accept submissions for posters and/or talks. Talks are slated for 20 minutes plus 10 minutes for questions.

Abstracts should be no more than 500 words (Times New Roman size 12, with one additional page for example, tables, figures and (selected) references). Titles should be centered at the top of the page, in bold and upper case.

Please ensure the abstract is fully anonymous: authors’ names or affiliations should not be indicated anywhere in the document or in the metadata.

Important dates

Submissions open: 8 July, 2024  
Submissions due: 16 September, 2024
Notification of acceptance: 4 November, 2024 
Registration period: 11 November-16 December, 2024
Final abstract submission: 2 December, 2024
Conference:  13-15 February, 2025

Scientific and financial support for this conference comes from the Collaborative Research Center SFB1102 Information Density and Linguistic Encoding.

Practical information

Information on travel, accommodation etc. is coming soon!