Edinburgh Research Explorer
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Phone: +44 (0)131 650 6657

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Leiden University

Area of Expertise

Research expertisephonetics, fieldwork, South Sudan, linguistics, Dinka, Shilluk, tone, prosody

Research Interests

I have two major research interests. One is suprasegmental systems, that is, the way languages make use of pitch, duration, voice quality, and loudness. My research contributes to establishing what kinds of suprasegmental systems can be found in the languages of the world. In this context, I have found evidence that languages can (a) have both tone contrast and distinctive stress; (b) have three-level vowel length; and (c) use tonal alignment contrastively in contour tones. My second major interest is the description and documentation of Shilluk, a West Nilotic language spoken in South Sudan. Thanks to funding from the Leverhulme Trust, this is currently the main focus of my day-to-day work.


In my teaching, I build on my practice-based research expertise to pass on qualitative and quantitative skills to students, from prehons to postgraduate levels. In the 2020-2021 academic year, I am teaching:

- Phonetics and Laboratory Phonology (Hons/MSc level, co-taught), for which I am also the coruse organizer

- Guided Research Seminar on intransitive verbs in Shilluk

Administrative Roles

I am the tutor coordinator for the subject area of Linguistics & English Language.


1997-2001       PhD in Linguistics (Leiden University)

1994-1996       Master of Arts in Linguistics (Leiden University)

1992-1994      First degree in Slavic Languages, with distinction

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