Here's a sample of some ongoing and past projects!
  • Laws of semantic change: (in collaboration with Yang Xu and Haim Dubossarsky) I study patterns and predictors of (lexical) semantic change using cross-linguistic historical dictionaries.

  • Framing in scientific debates: I study how verbs are used in scientific debates (such as the reality of anthropogenic climate change or the effectiveness of vaccines) to reinforce epistemic biases and beliefs.

  • Grammaticalization and bleaching: With Joshua Katz, I studied how "have to" evolved to express necessity ("I have work to do") in addition to possession ("I have a book to read for the trip home"). With Dan Jurafsky and Beth Levin, I studied how adverbs like "insanely" and "terribly" evolved to express intensification ("This recipe is insanely delicious!").

  • Mandarin resultative verb compounds (RVCs): With Edwin Williams, I studied the syntactic derivation of RVCs. I also study the semantics of these compounds with Beth Levin.

  • Instrument subjects in Mandarin Chinese: With Christiane Fellbaum, I studied under what conditions the instrument (thematic) role can be expressed as the syntactic subject of a sentence.

  • Orthographic evolution: I have studied the evolving orthographic systems of Swiss German and Mandarin Chinese under the influence of the Internet.