IAS/AISB Joint Workshop 2014:

"Figurative language: its patterns and meanings in domain-specific discourse"

Jointly organized as a workshop of the Institute of Advanced Studies at the University of Birmingham, and the Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour

18th--19th August 2014

The University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Venue location: Michael Tippett Room (Third Floor), Staff House (R24 on the Campus Map)

Download the Call for Abstracts



Symposium overview. [top]

Forms of figurative language such as metaphor and metonymy are key resources for communicating domain-specific information in an accessible way (e.g. in political discourse, presenting an argument can be described as "attacking an opponent's position", or in health discourse, infection can be described in terms of microbes "attacking someone's body"). Modelling such patterns of communication is a key aim of academic disciplines such as linguistics, discourse studies, and psycholinguistics, and automatically understanding such phenomena is an emerging goal within Artificial Intelligence and the related field of Natural Language Processing. A particularly interesting current area of research is work on automatically generating as well as understanding metaphor, which are both emerging as important sites for addressing long-standing problems in linguistics, artificial intelligence, and cognitive science.

To facilitate communication about such efforts, we are planning a two-day workshop on modelling the meanings and patterns of health and political conflict, where discourse in these domains typically gives rise to some of the richest and most figurative forms of human discourse. The workshop will take place at the University of Birmingham, and will be jointly organized through the University's Institute for Advanced Studies (IAS) as well as the AISB. We are calling for 500 word abstracts for presentations at this workshop, which may report research in progress, as well as more finished research. To coincide with IAS activities over lapping with the workshop, we are also planning a special session on the morning of the second day dedicated to corpus and computational resources, such as FrameNet, WordNet, Propbank, and Ontonotes (to name a few), and if you wish to present in this, please mark your abstract as for the "Special Session".

Discussion starters. [top]

The workshop aims to provide a forum for recent work on figurative language, in particular metaphor and metonymy. While the workshop is openly interdisciplinary, there is a special focus on the modelling of understanding and generation of metaphor. Key general questions here include the following.

To cope with the challenges of a fast-changing area of research, we would like to make special mention of two highly multidisciplinary and very recent areas of interest that have opened up, and which we will be especially interested in hearing about.

Given how closely related figurative language is to culture, society and specific forms of communication, there are a range of possible target problems that could be addressed during the workshop, including the following.

Submission and publication details. [top]

Submissions are by abstract only and should be sent via EasyChair (this link will be available from 14/05/2014).

Selected papers (presented at this workshop) may be included for publication in the AISB general proceedings of the AISB Workshop Proceedings.

Registration. [top]

To register for the workshop, please see the relevant details on the IAS website.

Please note the following about registration:

Important dates. [top]

Schedule and event. [top]

Keynote Speakers:

Workshop Schedule (coming soon)

Workshop-related Events (coming soon)

Symposium organisers. [top]

Professor John Barnden (J.A.Barnden AT cs.bham.ac.uk)

Dr. Andrew Gargett (A.D.Gargett AT cs.bham.ac.uk)