Christian Ebert

Research Interests

I am interested in theoretical and computational aspects of natural language and its use, more precisely formal and computational semantics & pragmatics.

Bo helps you learning vocabulary Most recently I am interested in how gestures combine with speech and facilitate language learning. I collaborate with Cornelia Ebert on questions of formal gesture semantics and pragmatics and I co-founded cabuu, a startup that aims at providing the most efficient, flexible and entertaining (take a look at this cute robot!) vocabulary learning solution on this planet by implementing insights from gesture and learning research.

I worked on the interaction of presuppositions and information structure where I propose that a procedural explanation along the lines of the mental simulation view of language comprehension is a promising approach. Here's a handout of a recent talk at a workshop in Düsseldorf, 2014.

I am furthermore interested in distributional semantics and attempts to add compositionality to the proposed models. I've implemented some scripts to work with distributional semantic models in MATLAB.

Private Life

I love music (and producing it in particular)

and I love snowboarding (carving with soft bindings - THAT'S the real thing :-)

and I am a founder and board member of durcheinander e.V.

Short CV

Academic Positions

2009-2017 Assistant Professor (Akademischer Rat auf Zeit) at the Department of Linguistics of the University of Tübingen
2006-2009 Researcher in the project A2 Implicit Common Ground of the SFB 673 Alignment in Communication at the University of Bielefeld.
2005-2006 Lecturer and Researcher in the Theoretical Linguistics Group at the Department of Linguistics and Literature Science, University of Bielefeld
2001-2005 Part-time Research Assistant in the project Formal Foundations of Constraint-Based Semantics for Natural Language at the Department of Computer Science, King's College London.
1996-1999 Student Research Assistant in the projects
  • TalkingMap/DIReCT; subproject of DeepMap European Media Lab, Heidelberg.
  • Conceptual Planning and Linguistic Realisation of Focus/Background-Structures; DFG SPP 1022, Institute for Computational Linguistics, University of Heidelberg
  • Implicit Information; DFG SFB 245, Institute for Computational Linguistics, University of Heidelberg.


2005 PhD in Computer Science, King's College London. Thesis Formal Investigations of Underspecified Representations; Supervisors: Shalom Lappin, Jonathan Ginzburg
2000 Diplom in Maths with side subject Computational Linguistics, University of Heidelberg. Thesis: A Formal Analysis of Case Stacking Languages; Supervisors: Marcus Kracht, Klaus Ambos-Spies