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Сall for papers

Balkan Languages and Dialects: Typology, Dialectometry, Corpus-Based Studies

Date: October 15–16, 2020

Location: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Host Institution: Institute for Linguistic Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences

199004, Tuchkov pereulok 9, Saint Petersburg, Russia

Organizers: Alexander Yu. Rusakov, Maria S. Morozova, Maxim L. Kisilier

Meeting Email:

Linguistic Fields: Balkan Linguistics, Corpus Linguistics, Quantitative Methods, Areal and Contact Linguistics, Dialectology, Dialectometry, Phonology, Morphosyntax, Lexicon

Meeting Description

The conference “Balkan Languages and Dialects: Typology, Dialectometry, Corpus-Based Studies” (Saint Petersburg 2020) carries on and extends the discussion of topics raised at the conferences on corpus-based and quantitative approaches to the Balkan languages and dialects that took place in 2016 and 2018 at the Institute for Linguistic Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

We invite submissions from researchers who study various aspects of phonology, grammar, and lexicon of any or several of the Balkan languages and dialects, as well as specialists in the field of linguistic typology and comparative studies of the world’s languages who use material from the languages of the Balkan Peninsula in their works.

The conference focuses on the presentation and discussion of studies that apply quantitative methods of linguistics typology and dialectometry to the Balkan languages and dialects, corpus studies performed on the basis of the already existing linguistic corpora and databases, and works examining the Balkan languages and dialects in areal and typological perspective.

Important Dates

Submission of Abstracts May 1, 2020 (Extended till May 20, 2020)
Notification to the Authors May 15, 2020 (June 1, 2020)

The form of the conference (attendance, distance, or both) will depend on the situation.

Keynote Speakers

  • Ksenia Shagal (University of Helsinki)
  • Anastasia Makarova, Peter Ranacher, Barbara Sonnenhauser (University of Zurich)

Since the time of classical works devoted to the common features of the Balkan languages, in the world linguistics there has been a continuing interest in studying the Balkan area, which still remains an example of a linguistic area par excellence. However, corpus-anchored works on the Balkan languages and especially dialects, as well as studies using modern quantitative methods in application to the Balkans as an area and to individual micro-areas within the Balkans, are not numerous.

The examples of such studies include works that analyze the Balkan area as part of macro-areas, such as Europe and Eurasia (Kortmann 1997; Nichols 2017); quantitative typological studies that consider, among others, the Balkan languages (Сай 2019); dialectometric projects aimed at solving classical problems of the traditional dialectology, for example, the problem of determination of dialect borders, involving various quantitative approaches and computational methods (Prokić, Nerbonne 2008; Houtzagers, Nerbonne, and Prokić 2010), and at identifying coherent groupings, bridge points, and anomalous dialects in the dialect landscape of a given language (Dombrowski 2014); studies of dialectal grammar and vocabulary, in which quantitative methods are used to determine the degree of closeness of the dialects and the results are interpreted from the point of view of the language’s “contact history” (Rusakov, Morozova, Ovsjannikova 2018); works devoted to the development of methods that can serve for the quantitative exploitation of free-speech multilingual corpora (Adamou 2016) and for the creation of “language profiles” of a dialect speaker based on the distinctive features observed in speech (Конер, Макарова, Соболев 2019); corpus-based studies of grammar of the Balkan languages, for example Albanian and Balkan Slavic (Иванова 2014; Rusakov, Morozova 2014; Морозова 2015; Rusakov 2015), and studies in lexicostatistics analyzing, in particular, Romanian and Modern Greek material (Protopapas, Vlahou 2008; Ciobanu, Dinu 2016).

We invite researchers who study phonology, grammar, and lexicons of the Balkan languages and dialects and all linguists who consider the Balkan languages in their studies to submit papers for the conference “Balkan Languages and Dialects: Typology, Dialectometry, Corpus-Based Studies” that will be held in Saint Petersburg, 15–16 October 2020. The conference focuses on the presentation and discussion of synchronic and diachronic studies of any one or several of the Balkan languages and dialects, as well as of the Balkan area as a whole, in which:

  • corpus-driven approach is applied,
  • quantitative methods of linguistic data analysis are used,
  • the material of the Balkan languages and dialects is considered in a wide typological perspective.

We especially encourage studies performed on the basis of linguistic and dialectological atlases, linguistic corpora and databases for the Balkan languages and dialects, as well as contributions based on authors’ first-hand field data.

The languages of the conference are English, French, German, and Russian.

Speaking time is 20 minutes, plus 10 minutes for discussion.

Anonymous abstracts of 400–500 words (excluding references) in .doc/.docx/.rtf./.pdf format should be submitted to by May 1, 2020, with “Abstract” stated as the email subject.

The following information should be provided in the body of the email: (1) the exact title of your paper (if your abstract is in Russian, please, provide the English translation as well); (2) the first and last names of every author (if your write in Cyrillic, please, provide the English transliteration), and affiliation(s) of every author; (3) the email address of every author.

Abstracts will be evaluated and selected by the Programme Committee. We will notify you of the Committee’s decision by May 15, 2020.

There is no participation fee.

The organizers will not be able to cover participants’ travel and accommodation expenses.


  1. Adamou, Evangelia. 2016. A Corpus-Driven Approach to Language Contact: Endangered Languages in a Comparative Perspective (Language Contact and Bilingualism 12). Boston; Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.
  2. Ciobanu, Alina Maria, Liviu Dinu. 2016. A Computational Perspective on the Romanian Dialects. In N. Calzolari, Kh. Choukri, Th. Declerck, M. Grobelnik, B. Maegaard, J. Mariani, A. Moreno, J. Odijk, S. Piperidis (eds.). Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC 2016). Portorož, Slovenia, may 2016. European Language Resources Association (ELRA), 3281–3285.
  3. Dombrowski, Andrew. 2014. A Network Analysis of Macedonian Dialects (a Methodological Experiment). A paper presented at the 19th Biennial Conference on Balkan and South Slavic Linguistics, Literature and Folklore. April 25–27, 2014, University of Chicago, Illinois.
  4. Houtzagers, Peter, John Nerbonne, Jelena Prokić. 2010. Quantitative and traditional classifications of Bulgarian dialects compared. In Scando-Slavica, 56(2), 163–188.
  5. Kortmann, Bernd. 1997. Adverbial Subordination: A typology and history of adverbial subordinators based on European languages. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
  6. Nichols, Johanna. 2018. The Balkan Sprachbund in typological space. Plenary lecture at the International conference “Balkan Languages and Dialects: Corpus-based and Quantitative Studies”. 18–20 October 2018, Saint Petersburg (accessed on January 20, 2020).
  7. Prokić, Jelena, John Nerbonne. 2008. Recognizing Groups among Dialects. In International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing, 2(1–2), 153–172.
  8. Protopapas, Athanassios, Eleni Vlahou. 2008. A comparative quantitative analysis of Greek orthographic transparency. In Behavior Research Methods, 41(4), 991–1008.
  9. Rusakov, Alexander. 2015. Albanian Supercompound Verb Forms: A Corpus-Based Study. In Од Чикаго и назад. Papers to Honor Victor A. Friedman on the Occasion of His Retirement (Balkanistica, Vol. 28), 435–470.
  10. Rusakov, Aleksandër, Maria Morozova. 2014. Perfekti në shqipen e sotme: studimi i bazuar në tekstet e Korpusit elektronik të shqipes. In В. Rugova (kryered.). Materialet e punimeve të Seminarit XXXII Ndërkombëtar për Gjuhën, Letërsinë dhe Kulturën Shqiptare. Prishtinë, 19–30 gusht 2013. Prishtinë: KOHA Print: Fakulteti i filologjisë, 97–104.
  11. Rusakov, Alexander, Maria Morozova, Maria Ovsjannikova. 2018. Linguistic complexity and lexicon of Albanian dialects: An attempt of quantitative analysis. A paper presented at the Workshop “First step towards an interactive map of Balkan linguistic features”. 26–27 November 2018, University of Zurich, Switzerland (accessed on January 20, 2020).
  12. Иванова, Елена Юрьевна. 2014. Апрехенсив в русском и болгарском языках. In Studi Slavistici XI, 143–168.
  13. Конер, Дарья Владимировна, Анастасия Леонидовна Макарова, Андрей Николаевич Соболев. 2019. Статистический метод языкового профилирования носителя диалекта (на материале восточносербского идиома села Берчиновац). In Вестник Томского государственного университета. Филология 58, 17–33.
  14. Морозова, Мария Сергеевна. 2015. Filloj së bëri: аблатив отглагольного имени в конструкциях с фазовыми глаголами. In М.М. Макарцев, И.А. Седакова, Т.В. Цивьян (ред.). Балканский тезаурус: Начало. Балканские чтения 13. Тезисы и материалы. Москва, 7–9 апреля 2015 года. М.: Принт ПРО, 105–111.
  15. Сай, Сергей Сергеевич (отв. ред.). 2019. Валентностные классы двухместных предикатов в разноструктурных языках. СПб.: ИЛИ РАН.