Universiteit van Amsterdam


Institute for Logic, Language and Computation

Research Programmes

Research at the Institute for Logic, Language and Computation is organized into three core programmes. Logic & Language includes much of the research on formal semantics and pragmatics and philosophy of language. Language & Computation houses the ILLC's research in computational linguistics, computational musicology and information retrieval. Logic & Computation is home to our research into epistemic and mathematical logic, social choice, and foundations of mathematics.

Below are short descriptions of these programs. Additionally, we have chosen two key research themes, as key research areas which span across the three programs: Logic & Game Theory and Cognitive Modelling.

  • Click on 'Read more' to find out more about a particular programme, its leaders, researchers and activities.

Logic and Language

Logic and Language (LoLa) is a broad research programme in logic and the philosophy of language, at the boundaries with linguistics and cognitive science. We investigate human reasoning and the interpretation of language, and view interpretation as a dynamic, cognitive process that is embedded in both social practices and the external environment. Our view on how logic and language connect has its philosophical roots in the writings of Aristotle, Leibniz, Frege, Wittgenstein, Montague, and Grice. The work in this program is carried out under four main headings: Semantics and Pragmatics, Vagueness and Granularity, Logic and Cognition and Philosophical Foundations.

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Language and Computation

Language and Computation (LaCo) is a programme concerned with computational models of human information processing, especially natural language and music. We develop computational methods that are cognitively plausible as well as practically useful. An important focus is the development of corpus-based methods for natural language processing (NLP), building on our experience with the `Data-Oriented Parsing' model, with applications to first language acquisition, machine translation and the Computational Humanities. We also work on Information Retrieval and Question Answering, on models of linguistic processes in pragmatics and discourse (in the Optimality Theory framework) and on the cognitive mechanisms underlying musicality (focusing on temporal aspects, such as rhythm, timing, and tempo).

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Logic and Computation

The Logic and Computation group (LoCo) investigates a wide range of foundational issues in mathematics and computer science, in the tradition of Brouwer, Heyting, and Beth. Our research includes classical areas of mathematical logic and the foundations of mathematics, such as model theory, algebraic logic, and set theory. In theoretical computer science, we investigate fundamental problems in algorithmics and computational complexity, but also venture into new fields such as quantum computing and coalgebra. At the interface with other disciplines, including formal epistemology, artificial intelligence, and economic theory, we study the dynamics of interaction in groups of agents and problems of social choice.

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