Research topics

Work in the phonetics/phonology group of the ZAS deals with a wide variety of different topics and bridges the social sciences, the natural sciences, and the humanities. The languages that we are currently doing research on, are French, American English, Vietnamese, Ewe, Polish, Catalan and several varieties of German. The data we are investigating ranges from spontaneous speech gathered through sociolinguistic interviews and field work data to read text recorded in the laboratory. We have a very well equipped linguistic laboratory at which we can record articulatory, acoustic and respiratory data.

Our current research projects include analyses into

the acoustic and articulatory manifestations of the realization of prosodic boundaries:

  • glottal gestures in German depending on prosodic and segmental aspects,
  • acoustic realizations of boundaries in dependence of lexical frequency,
  • gestural reorganisations in slow and fast speech,
  • focus marking and phrasing in complex tone languages,

phonological analyses of boundary phenomena

  • typologically oriented phonological analyses of insertions and deletions

the physiological mechanisms in the production of boundary markings such as

  • acoustic and articulatory inter-speaker variability in the speech of twins
  • respiratory and pausal planning under different linguistic conditions (i.e. sentence length)
  • modelling of boundary phenomena as gestural behaviour in an articulatory model

the acoustic, prosodic and morpho-syntactic characteristics of spontaneous speech

  • corpus-based analyses of spontaneous speech from different districts of Berlin


Funding period



Dr. Stefanie Jannedy