The 13th International Diachronic Generative Syntax Conference

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA
June 2-5, 2011

Welcome to DiGS

The Department of Linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania is pleased to be hosting the thirteenth meeting of DiGS, the Conference on Diachronic Generative Syntax, on June 2-5, 2011. For the past twenty years, DiGS has been the leading international forum for the presentation of research on historical syntax from a generative perspective. The conference features work combining the historical and the formal investigation of syntactic phenomena, aiming to establish the proper relationship between two basic facts of language:

Important links

Registration information

Registration fees will be as follows:

Funding from the NSF and other sources will support travel subventions of $150 - $200 for student presenters at both the main conference and the poster sessions. Please note that funding will be available both for US and non-US student presenters. Application instructions for the subvention will be sent shortly after notification of abstract acceptance.


We have arranged for accommodations at a somewhat reduced group rate at the Sheraton Philadelphia University City Hotel, which is located one block from the Penn campus and the equivalent of three blocks from the conference site. Reservations can be made by following the link below:

Plenary speakers

The conference will include a keynote address by

and plenary addresses by:

Titles and abstracts for the keynote and plenary addresses can be found in the preliminary conference program.

Historical Corpus Workshop

DiGS 13 will feature an all-day multi-session workshop on corpus-based and quantitative methods in diachronic research. The workshop is funded by a grant for conference support from the NSF and will be held during the day of Thursday, June 2. The conference proper will open with David Lightfoot's keynote address on the evening of the same day.

The goal of the workshop is to introduce researchers to the use of syntactically annotated corpora for grammatical and diachronic investigations, including dynamical systems analysis of the time course of changes. The workshop will provide hands-on exposure to corpus annotation schemes, to search tools, and to techniques of statistical analysis. Workshop sessions will be led by faculty and advanced graduate students from Penn and elsewhere. Detailed information on workshop organization and curriculum can be found here. Workshop registrants will be eligible for reduced fee licenses for the Penn Historical Parsed Corpora series.

Contact us

For more information on the conference and/or the workshop, please contact the organizers at

DiGS 13 Sponsors:

Department of Linguistics, University of Pennsylvania
School of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania
US National Science Foundation