E-mail: hedvig.public [snabel-a] gmail.com

Twitter: @laserhedvig


I'm a linguist from Sweden (Uppsala-Stockholm), living in Australia (Canberra). My background is as a typologist interested in complexity, contact, linguistic methodology and systematic bottom-up comparative research. My recent interests are mainly focused on methodology of large scale comparative studies, driving forces in large scale language change and databases. I'm currently focusing on variation in Samoan and diversification of Pacific languages.

I'm doing my PhD at the Australian National University. I'm part of a larger research project investigating the question of what it is that drives linguistic diversity, it's called the Wellsprings of Linguistic Diversity and is lead by Prof. Nicholas Evans. My particular project focusses on the Samoan archipelago and comparing it to the other sites in our project (Pentecoste, Arnhemland and Souther New Guinea). For a longer description of our entire overarching research project, go here. I recently did a presentation about my project, my part in it, the slides can be found here.

I'm also a part of the Glottobank consortium, working on a global grammatical survey of languages - Grambank.

I did my MA at Stockholm University (with exchange at University of Manitoba, Winnipeg) and I've also worked in a research project in the Nijmegen for some time, at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen.

Besides doing research I'm also involved in public outreach, such as the national olympiad of linguistics in Sweden and the international olympiad of linguistics. I also do lectures on linguistic typology and similar topics to high school students, write blog posts, talk on radio etc. I write on a blog called Humans Who Read Grammars. If you are interested in grammar and linguist diversity you might like it.

Apart from linguistics I am interested in roller skating, comic books and, as of recently, reading trashy fantasy novels at hipster coffee shops.

Name pronunciation

Since this is a common question (because linguists). The pronounciation is basically "head" + "wig" + "she" + "god". If you're keen to be a bit more authentic, try making a [v] instead of a [w]. For my continental germanic friends: the [g] is pronounced as in "dig", i.e. not unvoiced ([k]) or fricativised ("Bach").

Swedish is a semi-tonal language, and we've got an unsual fricative ([ɧ]) and retroflexes ([ɖ]). These are the main challenges of my last name. I'm okay if you get it wrong, don't worry. Try for "head" + "wig" + "she" + "god" and it'll be fine. (Yes, it's fine to drop the first "r" in "Skirgård", it's teeny-tiny anyway.)

For name tags, I appreciate having a dot over the "a" in my last name, i.e "Skirgård" since "a" and "å" are dramatically different in their pronoucation ([a] vs [o]).

Yes, I know about the owl and the musical and I'm happy that you do too!

Me on the left, with my partner Stephen Mann at our friends wedding on the Australian coast in May 2019.