This is an archive page; this conference occurred in May 2017.

The site for the 26mfm is available here.

The 25th
Manchester Phonology Meeting

With a special session on
featuring Birgit Alber, Mark Donohue and a set of discussants

Thursday 25th - Saturday 27th May 2017

Held at Hulme Hall, Manchester

Organised through a collaboration of phonologists at the University of Edinburgh, the University of Manchester and elsewhere.

For information about the mfm and its history and background, see the mfm homepage. 

There will be a wine party on the evening on the 25th May to celebrate the fact that this is the 25th (!) silver-jubilee (!) mfm.

NEW: Koen Sebregts' presentation on 'Twenty-five years of the mfm, twenty-five years of phonology'.

There will also be a separately-organised fringe workshop on Ternarity in English, run by the Phonological Theory Agora on Wednesday 24th May.

programme and presenter info  ||  travel and accommodation  ||  booking  ||  organisers


The programme for the 25mfm, with all presentations scheduled, is available here:

25mfm programme

The abstracts booklet is available here:

25mfm abstracts booklet

The list of participants in the conference is here:

25mfm list of participants

Registration will begin at 11.30 on Thursday 25th May, and the midday meal begins at 12.00. The conference proper begins at 12.45 on the 25th and will finish around 5pm on Saturday 27th May.

As in previous years, the conference venue will be the Hulme Hall lecture suite in Manchester, which is located just south of the city centre and is easily accessible by public transport or on foot.

Guidance for presenters

Notes for oral-paper-presenters: You will have a 30 minute slot for your presentation, and you can choose whether you would rather have 20 minutes to talk and 10 minutes for questions, or 25 minutes to talk and 5 minutes for questions. There will be a data projector and computer speakers in both rooms, although we encourage you to bring handouts even if you are projecting your presentation. If you are bringing handouts, it is unlikely that speakers will need more than 60 handouts for the parallel sessions. We expect around 120 participants overall, but not everyone will be present all the time. You will need to bring your own laptop if you are using the data projector. There will not be a technician available during the conference to help with computer-assisted presentations, because it would be very expensive to pay for one. So, if you are using a computer for your talk, please make sure that you try out your presentation beforehand, in a meal or coffee break. 

Notes for poster-presenters: The poster displays will be set up on the evening before the poster session. You will be allocated a poster board with these dimensions: 210cm high x 120cm wide. Each person presenting a poster will be provided with the means to affix their posters to the display board. Please feel free to bring handouts with you, so that those viewing your poster also have something to take away. Posters in previous years have taken a wide variety of forms, and there is no one single way to produce a good poster; the important things are that the font size is not too small, that it is easily readable and does not have too much text on it, that it sets out the main points that you want to argue for clearly, and maybe that it's eye-catching, too. Our advice is: don't have too much text, and do include diagrams or other graphics as they can be easier for an audience to take in. Some presenters bring one big poster which takes up all the space (do note the dimensions of the poster board given above if you do this), others bring a series of A3 or A4 sheets of paper which can be fitted together on the poster board. In the past, horizontal (landscape) posters have worked better than vertical (portrait) ones, but it's fine to go with vertical (portrait) if you need the space. During your poster session, you will be asked to stand by your poster (for at least a fair amount of the session) as other conference participants walk around the displays, read your poster and ask you questions about it. There are a number of options to print posters near Hulme Hall: MuPrint (in between the town centre and Hulme Hall) has been recommended, and there is also a branch of Mail Boxes Etc near Hulme Hall (6 Wilmslow Road), which some people have used in previous years. We cannot guarantee that these businesses will be able to do what you need, so we advise you to check with them in advance if you are planning to use them. It is possible in principle to email or upload a file to MuPrint, so you may be able to arrange to have material ready and waiting for you.

Travel and accommodation

Detailed information on accommodation possibilities and on how to get to the conference (with a selection of maps) are provided on separate pages:

Booking was possible until the end of 15th May, and is no longer possible. Contact with any queries.

Cancellation policy: we will endeavour to refund any fees paid if you cancel by 16th May. Any cancellations after 16th May may not able to be fully refunded as we will have committed to certain payments on your behalf.

Special session

A special themed session is being organised for Friday 26th May by members of the organising committee and the advisory board. This will feature invited speakers, and - because one invited speaker pulled out quite late - a number of short contributions and invitations to discussion from members of the mfm advisory board. This should also lead to a session of open discussion when contributions from the audience will be very welcome.

Invited speakers
Birgit Alber (Universita di Verona)
Mark Donohue (Language Intelligence)

Adam Albright (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Yuni Kim (University of Manchester)
Marc van Oostendorp (Meertens Instituut)
 Tobias Scheer (Universite de Nice-Sophia Antipolis)

Typology and phonological theory

Should phonologists do typology? Phonologists have long sought to test their hypotheses on the widest possible set of languages, and OT has made factorial typologies an explicit part of testing analyses, but the set of languages considered in such work is often limited in practice and geographically biased. Would it change our notion of the ‘canon’ of data to be explained, or of what is marked and unmarked, if we aim to base generalisations on a representative sample of languages? Which aspects of phonological systems are most (or least) amenable for typological research? Is it actually important, though, how frequently a particular phenomenon occurs in languages? Should we account for what is probable in phonology, or only worry about what is possible, so that rare patterns are as informative as common ones? Or should we even conclude that typology is undermined by the fact that it can only consider those languages which exist, not those which could exist? If phonologists should be doing typology, how should it be done? Inductively via large databases, or deductively via formal tools such as factorial typologies, or both? What are the results of typological study? Are there absolute universals in phonology? Or only statistical likelihoods? What kinds of explanations should we adopt for these results - functional or formal accounts? The invited speakers and discussants in this session will address these and other related questions.


Organising Committee
The first named is the convenor and main organiser - if you have any queries about the conference, feel free to get in touch (

 Patrick Honeybone (University of Edinburgh)
 Ricardo Bermudez-Otero (University of Manchester)
 Patrycja Strycharczuk (University of Manchester)
Yuni Kim (University of Manchester)

Michael Ramsammy (University of Edinburgh)

Advisory Board
Adam Albright (MIT)
 Jill Beckman (Iowa)
Stuart Davis (Indiana)
Laura J. Downing (Gothenburg)
Silke Hamann (Amsterdam)
 S.J. Hannahs (Newcastle upon Tyne)
 Kristine A. Hildebrandt (Southern Illinois)
 Martin Kramer (Tromso)
Nancy Kula (Essex) 
Aditi Lahiri (Oxford)
Nabila Louriz (Hassan II, Casablanca)
Joan Mascaro (UAB)
Kuniya Nasukawa (Tohoku Gakuin)
 Marc van Oostendorp (Meertens)
 Tobias Scheer (Nice)
 James M. Scobbie (QMU)
Jennifer L. Smith (UNC)
Nina Topintzi (Thessaloniki)
 Jochen Trommer (Leipzig)
Francesc Torres-Tamarit (Paris 8)
Christian Uffmann (Duesseldorf)
Ruben van de Vijver (Duesseldorf)
Sophie Wauquier (Paris 8)
Draga Zec (Cornell)
Elizabeth Zsiga (Georgetown)
Organisatory Helpers
Stefano Coretta (Manchester)
Stephen Nichols (Manchester)
Jade Jorgen Sandstedt (Edinburgh)
Jane Scanlon (Manchester)

The site is hosted by the Department of Linguistics and English Language at the University of Edinburgh.

Page created by Patrick Honeybone
                                                                      Last updated May 2017