Adina Williams

image-001You can view my CV here (updated 7/15).

I am a postdoctoral researcher in linguistics at FAIR NYC (as of Oct. 2018).

As a highly interdisciplinary researcher, I specialize in semantics, syntax, and their interface, with neurolinguistics, computational linguistics, and formal linguistic theory as my main methodologies. Theoretical linguistic insights form the basis for my investigations into grammatical representations in the mind and computer. I defended my PhD in Linguistics at New York University in Apr. 2018, and it conferred in September 2018; it is Representing Relationality: MEG Studies of Argument Structure, and includes 3 experimental chapters (MEG), and a chapter on classifying words as transitive-intransitive using only their orthographic forms.


  • Topic: Syntax-Semantics Interface
  • Methodologies: Computational & Experimental Approaches to Linguistics and Cognitive Science


  • Natural Language Understanding 
    • Universal Sentence Representations
    • Natural Language Inference, Crowd-sourcing for NLP
    • Evaluating syntactic representations induced from TreeRNNs that perform semantic tasks
  • Computational Cognitive Science
    • “Arbitrariness” of Mandarin Chinese classifier-noun associations
    • Grammatical gender in inanimate nouns
    • semantic typology
  • Brain Basis of Syntactic and Semantic Processing 
    • Argument Structure and Event Structure
    • Syntactic Category
    • Representations of Number
  • Semantics of Inflectional Morphology 
    • Number Interpretation, Marking, and Countability
    • Prepositional and Verbal Aspect
    • Bare Singulars and Weak Definites
  • Syntax & Semantics of Mandarin Chinese
    • Morpho-semantics of aspect (micro-parametric syntactic variation)
    • Classifiers and countability