Personal profile


I am a research fellow  School of Culture, History & Language at the Australian National University.

I am currently working on developing computational resources for Pacific Creole Languages (Tok Pisin, Solomon's Pijin and Bislama).

Prior to this, I have worked on language documentation and description in West Papua, specifically on the Yei language. This was funded by the Endangered Languages Documentation Programme. I have also been a British Academy Newton International Fellow hosted at the Surrey Morphology Group where I am an ongoing visiting scholar. 

I completed my PhD in 2017 at the Australian National University. My research was a description of Ngkolmpu, a Yam language spoken in West Papua, along with a discussion of issues in morphological theory and typology. 

Research interests

I am fascinated by the exuberant and finely detailed structures found in languages which linguists call 'morphological complexity.' I explore this using traditional qualitative linguistics (description, typology and historical linguistics) enhanced with computational and mathematical approaches. 

I am interested in role that variation, function and adaptation might play in explaining linguistic structures.

The core of my work is fieldwork on undescribed and (often) endangered languages of New Guinea. I practice community-led partnerships in language documentation to produce collections of endangered languages serving both scientific and community needs.


  • PhD (Australian National University)
  • BA (Hons I) (University of Sydney)

Current student projects

  • Kira Davey. PhD thesis: TBD
  • Zurab Baratashvili. PhD thesis: A Grammar of Ipiko.
  • Aarin Tirza Sirima. PhD thesis: Middles in Austronesian languages.

Past student projects

  • Tina Gregor. PhD thesis: A Documentation and Description of Yelmek (a Papuan language of Southern New Guinea)

Researcher's projects

Education/Academic qualification

Linguistics, PhD, The Ngkolmpu Language with special reference to distributed exponence , The Australian National University

Award Date: 13 Jul 2017

External positions

Visiting Scholar - Surrey Morphology Group, University of Surrey, UK

31 Mar 2019 → …

Expertise Areas

  • Morphology
  • Descriptive linguistics
  • Linguistic typology
  • Papuan languages


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