The Trans-New Guinea language family currently occupies most of the interior of New Guinea. This family is possibly the third largest in the world with 400 languages and is tentatively thought to have originated with root-crop agriculture around 10,000 years ago. However, vanishingly little is known about this family's history. In this project I will construct a large comparative database of lexical and grammatical information about these languages. I will apply cutting-edge computational phylogenetic methods to these data to uncover the sequence and timing of this population expansion. This project will reveal the origins and spread of these languages and lead to a deeper understanding of human prehistory in the Pacific.
|Effective start/end date||13/06/12 → 1/07/16|
- Australian Research Council (ARC): AUD375,000.00