CALL FOR PAPERS: Multidisciplinary Approaches to Discourse 2001

Liesbeth Degand Degand at EXCO.UCL.AC.BE
Fri Sep 29 12:08:26 UTC 2000

Apologies for multiple postings

                         *** CALL FOR PAPERS ***

                   MAD'01: 4th International Workshop on

                Multidisciplinary Approaches to Discourse

              Improving text: From text structure to text type

                     5-8 August 2001, Ittre (Belgium)


The organisers of "Multidisciplinary Approaches to Discourse 2001" (MAD'01)
invite submissions for this workshop on (psycho)linguistic research of text

The goal of this workshop is to bring together researchers from different
disciplines, in particular theoretical and applied linguists, computational
linguists, and psycholinguists, to exchange information and learn from each
other on a common topic of investigation: text and discourse. More
specifically, the question to be addressed is "What makes a good text
good?" Text quality depends upon many factors and can in itself be
considered a complex concept (what is good for one aspect of the text need
not benefit other aspects). In order to make real advances in the domains
of text quality and document design, it is necessary to combine results
from both theoretical (linguistics) and experimental (psychology) research.

We encourage submissions related to but not limited to the following topics:

- How does the reader's background knowledge interact with the structure
and wording of the document?
- What is the impact of the age, socio-cultural background, educational
level of the reader on the use of textual properties?
- Which text types come with which textual properties?
- What is the impact of genre on text processing?
- Do similar text types have similar properties in different languages?
- What is the role of the text type on acquiring writing proficiency?
- How can a document's macrostructure be put to use in areas like text
summarisation and in predicting memory for a text?
- How is the macrostructure signalled linguistically?
- What is the relation between a text's macrostructure and the flow of
information in a document?
- How is the microstructure of a text signalled linguistically?
- What kind of coherence relations are there?
- How can they be grouped?
- How are they acquired, in first language and in second language learning?
- What is the impact of poorly written documents on such topics as the
ability of users to install or operate their VCR or on the ability to fill
in their tax form?
- What is the influence of badly designed documents on a company's image?
- How can one strike a balance between the organisation's objectives and
the client's needs?


In order to keep a small-scale intensive workshop, only 20 presentations
will be accepted at the workshop. The presentation slots will be 30 minutes
long with 15 minutes discussion.  The conference language is English. All
accepted papers will appear in the form of proceedings before the Workshop.


In addition to the 20 presentations, there will be four keynote lectures.
Keynote speakers are:

Francis Cornish, Equipe de Recherche en Syntaxe et Sémantique, Université
de Toulouse le Mirail
Donia Scott, Information Technology Research Institute, University of
Patricia Wright, School of Psychology, Cardiff University
Rolf Zwaan, Psychology Department, Florida State University


For up-to-date information on all matters concerning the workshop, please
check the MAD website:

If the information you need is not yet available, feel free to contact the

Liesbeth Degand, coordinator (degand at
Yves Bestgen (bestgen at
Véronique De Keyser (dekeyser at
Jon Oberlander (jon at
Wilbert Spooren (w.spooren at
Luuk Van Waes (Luuk.VanWaes at


Att. of Liesbeth Degand
Université catholique de Louvain
Place du Cardinal Mercier, 10
B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve


15 January 2001: Abstract submission
30 March 2001: Notification of acceptance
31 May 2001: Deadline submission of revised papers

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