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International conference

Prosody-Discourse Interface (IDP 2013)
September 11-13, 2013
University of Leuven (KU Leuven), Leuven, Belgium

We are grateful to the following organisations for their financial support:
Institut Langage et Communication

Call for papers

Key-note speakers

  • Petra Wagner (University of Bielefeld)
    Timing and Prominence in Conversational Interaction (Abstract)
  • Céline De Looze (Trinity College Dublin)
    Automatic analysis of speech prosody dynamics in social interactions: challenges and applications (Abstract)

Conference Description

The general topic of this conference is the relation between prosody and discourse. Previous conferences in this series were held in Aix-en-Provence (2005), Geneva (2007), Paris (2009), and Salford (2011).

The IDP 2013 conference will be held in Leuven (Belgium), at the Faculty of Arts of the University of Leuven (KU Leuven), on september 11 to 13, 2013. It is a joint organisation by FranItalCo, the research group of French and Italian linguistics from the university of Leuven, and by the research centre Valibel - Discours & Variation of the university of Louvain-la-Neuve (Université catholique de Louvain).

There is a wide range of phenomena which illustrate how research in prosody feeds into research into discourse and vice versa: information structuring, the communication of attitudes and emotions, irony and humour, language processing, the identification of genre and speech styles, and speaker accommodation phenomena.

In this conference series, the relationship between prosody and discourse has been viewed from the perspective of phonetics, phonology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, language acquisition, language processing, language pathology, stylistics and speech synthesis. Moreover, research has been carried out in a variety of theoretical paradigms.

This conference will focus on the following topics.

  • Prosodic boundaries
    Prosodic boundaries play a central role in information structuring. But how does the listener identify such boundaries? Are there prosodic forms dedicated to boundaries? If so, what are their acoustic and/or perceptual correlates? Or are prosodic boundaries only identified as such when they occur at particular positions in syntactic or discourse structure? What are the functions of prosodic boundaries in discourse? Are boundaries marked in a language-specific way, or do they have universal features?
  • Pitch range, global and local
    When pitch range is approximated as the span between lower and higher pitches for a given speaker, does it remain constant in discourse, or does it change in such a way that stretches with narrow or wide register (local pitch range) may be identified? How does one detect register? What is the role of register (or register change) in discourse? How does the existence of register affect the identification of prosodic forms (such as tones)?
  • Speech rate and rhythm
    When speech rate is defined as the number of syllables per second, it is clear that the duration of successive syllables varies considerably and that local speech rate changes dynamically. What could be an appropriate measure to specify local speech rate? What is the function of speech rate or change of speech rate in discourse?
  • Regional variants of prosody
    It is often assumed prosodic contours with a given function may differ from one regional variety of a language to the next. If this is the case, how do we characterize these alternative realisations and how we detect them in continuous speech?
  • Prosody and individual speaking styles
    Previous research demonstrates the existence of genres and even individual speech styles, with respect to prosodic properties. Do listeners identify such attributes and do speakers use them in a controlled way?

The languages of conference are English and French. The conference program will consist of oral presentations and a small number of poster presentations. Parallel sessions will be avoided as much as possible.

Paper submission

Deadline. The closing date for submission is May 24, 2013.

Conference proceedings. The accepted papers will be available in digital form (website) at the conference.

Long article publications. The editor of the Journal of Speech Sciences has accepted to publish an extended version of a selection of papers presented at the conference.

Format. We invite submissions for oral presentations of 20 minutes plus 5 minutes for discussion, as well as for a small number of poster presentations. Submissions are limited to a maximum of two papers per author, either as a single author or as a co-author.

These submissions, describing original research related to the topics of the conference, will consist of 5 page papers in PDF format only. All papers should be submitted in well-checked English or French.

The style sheet for the paper submissions is available in MS-Word format and in PDF.

As reviewing will be double-blind, the submissed papers should not include the authors' names and affiliations or any references to web-sites, project names etc. revealing the authors' identity. Furthermore, any self-reference should be avoided. For instance, instead of "We previously showed (Brown, 2001)...", use citations such as "Brown previously showed (Brown, 2001)...". In the submitted version, the names and affiliations of the authors will be replaced by "NNN". After notification, a final version of the accepted papers, including the authors' names and affiliations should be uploaded to the EasyChair website.

Each submitted paper will be reviewed by two or more members of the scientific committee. There is no difference between the oral and poster presentations both in terms of reviewing process and publication in the proceedings.

Submissions should be made via the EasyChair page of the conference. If you do not have an account yet on this system, you will first need to register.

Important dates

  • October 12, 2012: First call for papers
  • January 14, 2013: Second call for papers
  • May 13, 2013 May 24, 2013: Submission of paper
  • July 10, 2013: Notification of acceptance
  • August 15, 2013: Deadline for preliminary registration
  • August 19, 2013: Deadline early registration
  • August 21, 2013: Deadline for final version of paper
  • September 9, 2013: Deadline for sending Powerpoint and PDF presentations
  • September 11-13, 2013: Conference

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Scientific committee

We would like to thank the following linguists for their willingness to take part in the abstract review process. Without their invaluable contribution, our conference would not be possible.

  • Corine Astésano, Université de Toulouse II - Le Mirail
  • Antoine Auchlin, Université de Genève
  • Roxane Bertrand, LPL, Université Aix-Marseille
  • Nicole Dehé, Universität Konstanz
  • Elisabeth Delais-Roussarie, LLF, Université Paris-Diderot
  • Céline De Looze, Trinity College Dublin
  • Elwys de Stefani, University of Leuven (KU Leuven)
  • Daniel Hirst, LPL, Université Aix-Marseille
  • Mariapaola d'Imperio, LPL, Université Aix-Marseille
  • Anne Grobet, Université de Genève, Ecole de langue et de civilisation française
  • Anne Lacheret, MoDyCo, Université Paris Ouest
  • Philippe Martin, Clillac-Arp, Université Paris-Diderot
  • Piet Mertens, University of Leuven (KU Leuven)
  • Anne Catherine Simon, Université catholique de Louvain
  • Cristel Portes, LPL, Université Aix-Marseille
  • Brechtje Post, University of Cambridge
  • Petra Wagner, Universität Bielefeld
  • Anne Wichmann, University of Central Lancashire

Local organizing committee


  • Piet Mertens, University of Leuven (KU Leuven)
  • Anne Catherine Simon, Université catholique de Louvain


  • Alice Bardiaux, Université catholique de Louvain
  • Laurence Martin, Université catholique de Louvain
  • Gélase Nimbona, Université catholique de Louvain
  • Tom Velghe, University of Leuven (KU Leuven)


For any further question, please contact us by e-mail:

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Conference programme

The conference will take place from wednesday Sept 11 at 14:00 to friday Sept 13 at 13:00. On wednesday, registration will start at 13:00. This will allow many participants to travel on wednesday morning and friday afternoon, if they like to do so.

The program is available here.

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Faculty of Arts
Blijde-Inkomststraat 21
3000 Leuven
Justus Lipsius zaal (Level 8, 9th floor, Room 08.16)

Click here to find a map with the Location of the faculty in the city of Leuven.
When you leave the railway station, the Faculty is just one kilometer away. Take the main street (Bondgenotenlaan) that faces the railway station and the monument. After a few minutes you will pass by the statue of Justus Lipsius. Take the second street on your left behind the statue and continue up Leopold I straat. After 400m you'll reach Ladeuzeplein, a wide open square with the university's main library on your left. The street (Arendstraat) to the left of the library leads you to a small square called Erasmusplein. Here you see a parking space with some trees. The faculty is the huge greyish building just behind it.

Travel advice

The conference will start on wednesday Sept 11 at 14:00 and end on friday Sept 13 at 13:00. On wednesday, registration will start at 13:00. This will allow many participants to travel on wednesday morning and friday afternoon, if they like to do so.

Leuven is situated on the main railways lines crossing Belgium. Leuven can be reached with a direct train (about 15 minutes) from the airport Brussels-National Airport (airport code BRU). Check timetables for the train at this website. When asking for train tickets or directions, make sure to mention "Leuven", rather then "Louvain", otherwise you might end up in "Louvain-la-Neuve".

If you fly into Charleroi Airport ("Brussels South", airport code CLR), there is a bus service (approx. 60 min) to the railway station Brussel Zuid (Bruxelles Midi). From Brussels there are direct trains to Leuven (approx. 30 min). You can consult the NMBS website for timetables.

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Conference Dinner

A conference dinner is organised on thursday evening in a restaurant near the conference venue. The dinner includes an apéritif, a starter, a main course, a desert, water and wine and coffee. Please select a starter and a main course of your choice and mention their codes in the preliminary registration mail.


1F- Saumon mariné à l'aneth / Marinated salmon with dill

1M- Carpaccio filet de boeuf / Carpaccio fillet of beef

1V- Petite tour de riz aux champignons, au brie fondant (Vegetarian)

Main course

2M- Filet pur, sauce béarnaise, légumes / Beef with bearnaise

2F- Cabillaud sauce mousseline, haricots verts /

2V- Bouchée à la reine végétarienne au tofu / (Vegetarian)

Price: 40 euros, to be paid cash at the registration desk (please prepare exact amount).


Conference fee

  Before August 20 After August 19 After Sept 5
Students 150 euro 175 euro Only cash on site
Non-students 200 euro 225 euro Only cash on site

The indicated fees do not include the conference dinner.


1. Please send an email to the email address of the conference with the following information :

  • Title, First name, Last name
  • Affiliation for list of particiants
  • Affiliation for badge
  • Preferred email address
  • Postal address, Zip code, City, Country
  • Private address, if payment is made from your private bank account
  • Conference dinner: no dinner / codes for starter and main course

2. Make the payment either by bank transfer or by credit card

After September 5, only on-site cash payment is accepted.

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Leuven offers a broad range of accommodation possibilities, including hotels, bed & breakfasts and hostels. Please make reservations directly with the hotel of your choice, or using a website such as

For an overview of hotels in Leuven, please visit the webpage of the Leuven Tourist Office.

There are many conferences in Leuven in september and some hotels are already fully booked. We therefor advise you to make your hotel reservations as soon as possible.

The following hotels, as well as the youth hostel, are all within walking distance of the conference site or the railway station.

Website: Piet Mertens