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Mats Rooth



Rooth does research in two areas, computational linguistics and natural language semantics. He has worked on mixed symbolic/probabilistic models of syntax and the lexicon, on contrastive intonation (what is called focus), and on related phenomena such as ellipsis and presupposition. In addition to these, he is currently working on finite state models of phonology and phonetics.


  • Cognitive Science Program
  • Linguistics
  • Philosophy

Graduate Fields

  • Linguistics
  • Information Science


Spring 2021



Abusch, Dorit and Mats Rooth (2021). Modalized normality in pictorial narratives. Sinn und Bedeutung 25 (preprint).

Rooth, Mats and Dorit Abusch (2019). Indexing across media.  Proceedings of 22nd Amsterdam Colloquium. (

Rooth, Mats (2019). Adverbs of quantification. Prepared for A Reader's Guide to Classical Papers in Formal Semantics, edited by Zoltan Szabo and Luise McNally. Author's version of July 2019 (1813/69894).

Rooth, Mats and Dorit Abusch (2018). Picture descriptions and centered content. Sinn und Bedeutung 21 (1813/69892).

Abusch, Dorit and Mats Rooth (2017). The formal semantics of free perception in pictorial narratives. 21st Amsterdam Colloquium, Dec. 2017 (pdf).

Rooth, Mats (2017). Finite state intensional semantics.  International Conference on Computational Semantics, Montpellier, Sept. 2017. (

Howell, Jonathan, Mats Rooth, and Michael Wagner (2017). Acoustic classification of focus: On the web and in the lab. Laboratory Phonology 8(1), 16. (

Rooth, Mats and Dorit Abusch (2017). Picture descriptions and centered content. Sinn und Bedeutung 21 (pdf).

Rooth, Mats (2016). Alternative semantics. In Caroline Féry and Shinichiro Ishihara (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Information Structure . Oxford University Press. (book info, preprint).

Rooth, Mats (2015). Representing focus scoping over new. In Thuy Bai and Deniz Özyildiz (eds.) Proceedings of the Forty-Fifth Annual Meeing of the North East Linguisic Society. Doi 1813/40860.

Rooth, Mats (2014). Operators for definition by paraphrase. In a Festschrift for Ede Zimmermann: Approaches to Meaning: Composition, Values, and Interpretation, edited by Daniel Gutzmann, Jan Kopping and Cécile Meier (book info, postprint).

Lutz, David, Parry Cadwallader and Mats Rooth (2013). A web application for filtering and annotating web speech data. Web as Corpus 8, July 2013. Doi 1813/33464.

Data and Software

Rooth, Mats, (2015). Kaldi-alignments-matlab. Display and play Kaldi phone alignments. Github.

Rooth, Mats, (2014). Replication data for: Operators for definition by paraphrase, doi:10.7910/DVN/25512 Harvard Dataverse Network [Distributor] V1 [Version].

Recent and Upcoming Presentations

Epistemic semantics in guarded string models. SCiL 2021, Feb. 15-19 2021. With Eric Campbell.

Modalized normality in pictorial narratives. Sinn und Bedeutung 25, September 2020 (slides).

Is there reference to questions in the grammar of focus? Workshop on Focus, Alternative Semantics and Information Structure at SALT30, August 2020 (slides).

Indexing across media. 22nd Amsterdam Colloquium, 2019.

Formal semantics of pictorial narratives. ESSLLI 2018, 30th European Summer School in Logic, Language and Information, Sofia, August 2018 (course description).