Sie sind hier: FRIAS Fellows Fellows 2017/2018 Dr. Michael Rießler

Dr. Michael Rießler

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft
Junior Fellow
März 2017 - Februar 2018

Raum 02 016
Tel. +49 (0) 761-203 97394
Fax +49 (0) 761-203 97450


I hold an MA degree in Northern European Studies from Humboldt University of Berlin, a PhD in General Linguistics from the University of Leipzig and I am an Adjunct Professor in Finno-Ugric/Uralic Studies at the University of Helsinki. My current affiliation is at the University of Freiburg, where I lead my own research group (  and I am also the co-applicant for a large-scale interdisciplinary research project ( funded in the Academies’ Programme at the University of Hamburg and aiming at the systematic linguistic documentation of several Uralic and other languages of Siberia. 

Multilingualism and Language Diversity are the major keywords for my own professional interest as a linguist. In addition to documenting and describing endangered languages with contemporary e-science methods, I am specialized in the sociology of language and minority language policy, as well as language contacts and linguistic typology.

Publikationen (Auswahl)

  • Ciprian Gerstenberger, Niko Partanen, and Michael Rießler (2017). "Instant annotations in ELAN corpora of spoken and written Komi, an endangered language of the Barents Sea region." In: Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on the Use of Computational Methods in the Study of Endangered Languages. ACL Anthology. Honolulu: Association for Computational Linguistics. 57-66. url:
  • Ciprian Gerstenberger, Niko Partanen, Michael Rießler, and Joshua Wilbur (2017b). "Utilizing language technology in the documentation of endangered Uralic languages." In: Northern European Journal of Language Technology (NEJLT). 4. 29-47. url:
  • Michael Rießler and Joshua Wilbur (2017). "Documenting endangered oral histories of the Arctic. A proposed symbiosis for language documentation and oral history research, illustrated by Saami and Komi examples." In: Oral History meets Linguistics. Ed. by Erich Kasten, Katja Roller, and Joshua Wilbur. Fürstenberg: Foundation for Siberian Cultures. 31-64. url:
  • Michael Rießler (2016). Adjective attribution. Studies in Diversity Linguistics 2. Berlin: Language Science Press. doi: 10.17169/langsci.b19.294. url:
  • Kristina Kotcheva and Michael Rießler (2016). “Clausal complementation in Kildin, North and Skolt Saami.” In: Complementizer semantics in European languages. Ed. by Kasper Boye and Petar Kehayov. Empirical Approaches to Language Typology 57. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton, 499–528


Language Documentation meets Language Technology: The Next Step in the Description of Komi

The project is one of the very first attempts to work in the paradigm of endangered language documentation and description while systematically applying methods from natural language processing for automated corpus annotation. This is against the mainstream, which prefers manual work. 

The project will consist of two parts, which together aim at the description of  the small and hitherto under-ressourced Uralic language Komi-Zyrian by 1) producing a full-fledged grammar parser building on rule-based Finite State Transducer Technology for morphological analysis and enriched with Constraint Grammar rules for disambiguation and tagging syntactic dependency, and 2) creating a descriptive syntax written from a typological perspective and based on both our own already existing spoken corpus as well as the large corpus of literary Komi created in the Komi Republic, and annotated automatically with the help of the above-mentioned tool.

The two component parts of our project will also further best practices with regard to open data and reproducibility in linguistic research.