[Elsnet-list] D&D, Special Issue on Incremental Processing in Dialogue

das at ling.uni-potsdam.de das at ling.uni-potsdam.de
Tue Sep 8 11:54:04 CEST 2009

			   Call for Papers
		Special Issue of Dialogue & Discourse
		on Incremental Processing in Dialogue

Guest Editors

Hannes Rieser, University of Bielefeld, Germany
David Schlangen, University of Potsdam, Germany


The topic of the special issue is "incremental processing in
dialogue", by which we mean, very broadly, the successive processing
of input (or generation of output) in increments smaller than whole

This is a topic that has been of interest in many different
communities, with different foci. In conversation analysis, the main
interest has been on larger increments and their regular
distributions, for example on the allocation of turns or the placing
of repairs (e.g., Sacks, Schegloff, and Jefferson 1974 and 1977). At
about the same time, researchers working on the psychology of language
processing considered small increments such as phonemes and clusters
of them in words (Marslen-Wilson 1973, Grosjean 1986, Bard et
al. 1988). Work in psycholinguistics continued with Herb Clark's
research program that covered inter alia incrementality in syntax
production and reference resolution (Clark and Marshall 1981, Clark
and Wilkes-Gibbs 1990), and the fine-grained structure of speakers'
successive contributions in dialogue (Clark and Schaefer
1989). Eye-trackers and ERPs later gave researchers access to
fine-grained data about the time course of interpretation (e.g.,
Tanenhaus et al. 1995, van Berkum et al. 1999). In linguistic theory,
the development of Dynamic Syntax (Kempson, Meyer-Viol, Gabbay 2001,
Cann, Kempson, Marten 2005) triggered new interest in questions of
how representations can be built up incrementally (after some earlier
work e.g. by Neumann (1994, 1998) and Wiren (1994) at the DFKI
Saarbrücken). In dialogue theory, PTT explored how
"micro-conversational events" (Poesio 1995, Poesio and Traum 1997) can
be linked up with dialogue theory, an idea also taken up in Ginzburg's
KOS (Ginzburg, in press). More recently, some computational work has
looked at how incremental processing can be realised in dialogue
systems (Skantze and Schlangen 2009, Sagae et al. 2009, Edlund et al

The purpose of this special issue is to bring together work from
researchers from the different fields where incrementality of language
processing, in particular in relation to dialogue, is an issue. Our
aim is to take stock of the current state of the art as well as to
represent current, cutting edge research. We are seeking contributions
from people from a range of disciplines including, but not limited to
psycholinguistics, computational dialogue modeling and more
traditional linguistics.

Topics of Interest

We seek submission on topics including, but not limited to, the

Incrementality and Dialogue Structure:

Consideration of incrementality changes one's assessment of dialogue
structure. Papers in this section may e.g. deal with sub-turn
activities of contributors to dialogue such as forms of
acknowledgement, repair and other means of "help by other" and which
type of structures these contributions will generate.

The Time-Course of Interpretation Processes:

Here prototypical papers could deal with the problem of which type of
information gets priority in the interpretation process, for example
syntax or prosody, and can hence serve as a sort of integration

Accounts of Incremental Information from Different Strata of Dialogue:

Papers in this field are related to the fact that increments may carry
information on, say, prosody, rhetorical relations, continuations with
respect to semantics, anaphora and valence information which all have
to be filed into different places of some temporal dialogue structure
and which will generate different structural expectations.

Computational Models of Incremental Processing:

Papers in this area will inter alia deal with the coordination of
planning, production and parsing-processes with respect to
sub-propositional units.

Theoretical Models of Incrementality:

Papers in this area will focus on preconditions for or layers of
dialogue theory and their interfaces.

Repercussions of the Incrementality Concept on Traditional Topics of
Dialogue Theory:

Looking at proposals concerning dialogue structure one sees that these
basically rest on a propositional or on a speech act foundation. The
foundation then provides the preconditions for various sorts of
explanations. If one works with increments, the solution concepts for
time-honoured problems of dialogue description like systematic
up-dating, rhetorical relations, grounding or the resolution of
anaphora will have to change.

About the Journal

"Dialogue and Discourse" (http://www.dialogue-and-discourse.org)
is the first international journal dedicated exclusively to work that
deals with language "beyond the single sentence", in discourse (i.e.,
text, monologue) and dialogue, from a theoretical as well as an
experimental and technical perspective.

Practical Information

Submission deadline is December 31, 2009. Manuscripts need to be
formatted according to "Dialogue and Discourse" author guidelines, and
submitted using the journal's online manuscript submission system (see
http://www.dialogue-and-discourse.org/). As a guideline, full articles
should be around 30 pages, but if justified, significantly
shorter or longer papers will be considered as well. Publication of
this special issue will be in 2010.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if your have any practical
questions or are unsure about whether a possible topic you would like
to write about would fall under this call.

Hannes Rieser,   hannes.rieser at uni-bielefeld.de
David Schlangen, david.schlangen at uni-potsdam.de

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