Three two year postdoc (100%), ERC project LeibnizDream

The Leibniz-Center General Linguistics (ZAS, invites applications for three two-year full-time post-doctoral research positions in the ERC research project LeibnizDream (, Generator group, PI Uli Sauerland starting January 1st, 2021 or soon thereafter. The regulations of German limited term contract law apply. For applicants who haven’t worked at ZAS before the contract duration would be for 24 months.  Pay is at the E13 level of the German TVöD payscale. Applications for less than full-time hours will be considered.

Important dates

Application deadline: September 6th, 2020

Contract: January 1st, 2021 or soon thereafter


  • strong expertise in semantics
  • completed Ph.D. by the time of appointment

Desired assets

  • cross-linguistic semantics and fieldwork
  • language acquisition
  • syntax/semantics interface and morpho-semantics
  • experimental methods and statistics
  • teaching competence including for instructional videos
  • tech skills for collaborative, open science and computational methods
  • proven team-work skills


You work in different small teams with experts on language acquistion and morphology to design and evaluate cross-linguistic acquisition studies to test the Meaning First view of grammar the project is based on.  The comparative experiments are carried out across up to 50 different languages in collaboration with partners across the globe following the specification of the project grant. You lead one such study and contribute to up to three others as the semanticist.  We target six different areas of morpho-syntax/semantics, 1) the expression of causation and agency, and 2) of motion events, 3) the binary connectives, 4) negative concepts such as exclusion, antonyms, and negation, 5) quantificational concepts including genericity and distributivity, and 6) dependencies most frequently analyzed as variable binding (wh-questions, relative clauses, degree clauses).  

The project aims for cultural diversity and gender balance of its staff. The project furthermore seeks to implement the principles of open science. ZAS is an equal opportunity employer.

Applications must be submitted via electronic mail and include the following four items (1, 2 and 3 in PDF format): 1) a letter of intent specifying research experience and plans; 2) the curriculum vitae including a complete list of publications; 3) electronic copies of up to three representative publications; and 4) the names and email addresses of at least two scholars to be contacted for letters of recommendation. Interested researchers wishing for secure communication with PGP can contact us for the necessary encryption key.

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