I started working as a PhD student in the project “Co-speech gestures and prosody as multimodal markers of information structure” (MultIS) in October 2022.
MultIS is part of the DfG priority programme “Visual Communication. Theoretical, Empirical, and Applied Perspectives” (ViCom; DFG SPP 2392, Frankfurt am Main, Germany), which investigates linguistic and multimodal cues to communication from different perspectives.
In my dissertation, I investigate the prosody-gesture link in communication and the impact of information structure (IS; focus, topic, givenness) on the synchronization of gestures and prosodic entities in German. The bigger picture of the project includes a comparative analysis of German and Catalan with regard to the multimodal marking of information structure. A central aim in MultIS is the empirical approach to previously established prosody-gesture models, considering experimental as well as spontaneous speech utterances.
We measure occurrence frequency of non-referential gestures in company with pitch accents and IS-referents of different levels of prominence. In addition, we measure the degree of temporal alignment and intensity across the two modalities.
My MA thesis (title: “Co-speech Gestures, Information Structure and Prosody: A Corpus Study on Prominence Peak Alignment”) served as a pilot and preparation for MultIS.
Other research interests
My further interests include prosody, prosodic typology, empirical methodology, sound symbolism and OT.