Edinburgh Research Explorer

Prof Nikolas Gisborne

Chair of Linguistics

Phone: 0131 650 3600

Willingness to take PhD students: Yes

Research Interests

I have worked on several topics in lexical semantics (especially problems particularly posed by perception verbs), predication, and verb argument structure, as well as noun phrase structure, and relative clauses. Currently, I mostly work on syntax and language change, and my current main research project is on the diachrony of relative clauses.


I was educated at University College London, in the English Department and the Linguistics Department. I have taught at the University of Cambridge and the University of Hong Kong, and have been at Edinburgh since 2002.


Syntax, semantics, and lexical semantics from pre-Honours to MSc.

Administrative Roles

At different times I have had various administrative roles, including

  • Director of Studies/Personal Tutor
  • Convenor of Board of Studies
  • Member of School Management Committee
  • Member of College Undergraduate Studies Committee
  • Director of MSc English Language (several times)
  • Director of MSc Applied Linguistics
  • PG Advisor for Linguistics and English Language
  • Member of the committee of the LAGB


Research Groups

Meaning and Grammar Research Group

English Language Research Group


1989 BA in English, First Class Honours, University of London (University College).

1991 MA in Modern English Language, University of London (University College).

1996 PhD in Linguistics, University of London (University College).


Research outputs

  1. Thematic roles and events

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

  2. Word grammar morphology

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

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Research activities & awards

  1. Catholic University of Eichstaett-Ingolstadt

    Activity: Visiting an external institution typesResearch and Teaching at External Organisation

  2. Parallel evolution of relative clauses in Indo-European

    Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesInvited talk

  3. Ten Lectures on Event Structure in a Network Theory of Language

    Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesInvited talk

View all (43) »

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