Principal Investigators

Dr. Sigríður Sigurjónsdóttir is Professor of Icelandic Language and Linguistics at the University of Iceland. She has been a leading figure in the establish­ment of the field of first language acquisition at the University of  Iceland. She has done work on Icelandic, Faroese and Dutch first language acquisition, on syntactic change in Icelandic and carried out studies on the relationship between language acquisition and syntactic varia­tion and change. She led a large project supported by a RANNIS Grant in 1999-2001 and has been a co-applicant in a number of RANNIS projects since then.

Eiríkur Rögnvaldsson is Professor Emeritus of Icelandic Language and Linguistics at the University of Iceland. He has done work on Icelandic syntax, both synchronic and diachronic, and written textbooks on phonetics, phonology, and morpho­logy. He has been a key figure in the establishment of Icelandic language technology and has initiated and participated in many activities in this field. He has experience in leading large R&D projects, such as Viable Language Technology beyond English (RANNIS Grant of Excellence, 2009-2011) which produced the IcePaHC corpus, and the Icelandic part of META-NORD (ICT PSP Programme, 2011-2013).

Other participants

Dr. Ásgrímur Angantýsson is Professor in the School of Education and the School of Humanities at the University of Iceland. He specializes in syntactic variation in Icelandic and related languages, methods of data elicitation and educational linguistics.

Dr. Ari Páll Kristinsson is Research Professor and Head of Language Planning at The Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies. The institute operates in close coopera­tion with The University of Iceland. Kristinsson specializes in language policy and planning studies, language use, language ideologies, and language management.

Dr. Birna Arnbjörnsdóttir is Professor in the Faculty of Languages and Cultures at the University of Iceland. Her research focuses on second lan­guage acquisition, bilingualism, language contact, especially the effect of English on Ice­lan­dic (both in Iceland and among Icelandic immigrants in North America) and its effect on education in Iceland. Since 2009, she has directed and co-directed three related RANNIS funded research projects which are relevant to the project.

Dr. Guðbjörg Andrea Jónsdóttir is Director of the Social Science Research Institute at the University of Iceland. She specializes in survey methodology, data collection methods, comparisons between different types of surveys, integration of quantitative and qualitative methods, etc. Her expertise is of crucial importance in planning and organizing the inter­views and other data collection methods, and in processing and interpreting the results.

Dr. Anton Karl Ingason is Assistant Professor in Icelandic Language and Language Technology at the University of Iceland. He works on formal models of linguistic variation and change, formal theoretical linguistics, and lan­guage technology. He is also a co-author of the IcePaHC corpus (Wallenberg et al. 2011).

International collaborators

Dr. Charles Yang, Professor in Linguistics at the University of Pennsyl­vania, specializes in language acquisition, language change, computational linguistics, mor­pho­logy and psycholinguistics. His Variational Model of Language Acquisition will be a theoretical cornerstone of the current project. He continues to work on formal models of language acquisition and language change and will provide invaluable expertise to the project.

Dr. Joel Wallenberg is Lecturer in Linguistics and History of English at Newcastle University. He specializes in morphosyntactic theory and language change, with a focus on applying models from mathematical evolutionary theory to the acquisition and spread of new linguistic changes, the place of sociolinguistic variation in the grammar, and biological factors in linguistic variation.  He has substantial experience doing research on Icelandic and related languages, and he is one of authors of the IcePaHC corpus.

Dr. Laurel MacKenzie is Assistant Professor in Linguistics at New York University. Her research is situated at the intersection of variationist sociolinguistics and formal linguistic theory. She currently focuses on lifespan change, an important component of this project.

Dr. Noel P. Ó Murchadha is Assistant Professor of Language Education in the School of Education at Trinity College Dublin, and his main area of expertise is sociolin­guistics. His expertise in the study of canonical minority languages will be of importance for developing an understanding of the appropriate characterization of digital minoritization in the context of the proposed project.

Dr. Elin Thordardottir, Professor of speech-language pathology in the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at McGill University in Canada, is a well recognized researcher in the areas of normal language acquisition, bilingualism, and language impairment focusing on, for example, the development of language assessment tools for various popula­tions. A main focus of her bilingual research has been the impact of amount of exposure to each language on the acquisition of both vocabulary and grammar.

Post-doctoral researchers

Dr. Einar Freyr Sigurðsson worked on the project as a post-doc from June 2017 until September 2018. His dissertation places case, agreement and Voice phenomena in syntax. He has written a number of papers on Icelandic morphology and syntax, especially on case and passive. He is one of the editors of the three-volume work Tilbrigði í íslenskri setningagerð (Variations in Icelandic Syntax) and also one of the authors of the IcePaHC corpus.

Doctoral students

Ásrún Jóhannsdóttir is a Ph.D. candidate in Second Language Acquisition at the University of Iceland, and an Adjunct Lecturer in English at the Faculty of Language and Cultures. She has a background in statistical analysis and the acquisition of English by Icelandic children. In her thesis, she is expanding Dörnyei’s in­fluential motivational framework to include children in high exposure linguistic situations. After her graduation she will join the project as a postdoctoral researcher and work on the design of the project surveys and on the interpretation of the results with respect to theories of bilingualism and (second) language acquisition.

Iris Edda Nowenstein has an M.A. in linguistics and an M.S. in speech pathology from the University of Iceland. She focuses on experimental and formal approaches to language variation and change and her M.A. thesis in linguistics applies the model of Yang to variation in subject case marking in Icelandic. She is writing her dissertation as part of the project under the supervision of Professors Sigríður Sigur­jóns­dóttir and Charles Yang as well as Dr. Joel Wallenberg.

Þorbjörg Þorvaldsdóttir has an M.A. in linguistics from Leiden University. She specializes in the status and role of grammatical gender in Icelandic. She is writing her dissertation as part of the project under the supervision of Dr. Anton Karl Ingason.

Master’s students

  • Berglind Hrönn Einarsdóttir BA (2019)
  • Dagbjört Guðmundsdóttir MA (2017-2019)
  • Elín Þórsdóttir MA (2017-2018)
  • Hildur Hafsteinsdóttir BA (2018-2019)
  • Lilja Björk Stefánsdóttir MA (2017-2018)
  • Max Naylor MA (2017)
  • Steinunn Valbjörnsdóttir BA (2018)
  • Tinna Frímann Jökulsdóttir MA (2018)

Research assistants

  • Bolli Magnússon (2018-2019)
  • Bryndís Bergþórsdóttir BA (2018)
  • Hinrik Hafsteinsson BA (2018-2019)
  • Oddur Snorrason (2018-2019)
  • Ólöf Björk Sigurðardóttir BA (2018)
  • Salome Lilja Sigurðardóttir (2018-2019)
  • Sigríður Mjöll Björnsdóttir (2016-2017)
  • Sólrún Hedda Benedikz BA (2018-2019)
  • Þórunn Arnardóttir BA (2018-2019)

Statistical analysts

  • Helgi Guðmundsson (Social Science Research Institute)
  • Margrét Valdimarsdóttir (Social Science Research Institute)