Dr Matthew J. Carroll

PhD (Australian National University), BA (Hons) (University of Sydney)
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
College of Asia & the Pacific

Research interests

  • Papuan languages and linguistics, Yam languages in particular
  • Morphological theory and typology
  • Morphological complexity
  • Evolutionary linguistics


I am a postdoctoral fellow at the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language and the School of Culture, History & Language at the Australian National University.

Prior to this I was hosted as a Newton International Fellow at the Surrey Morphology Group where I retain visitor status.

I research the limits, emergence and maintenance of linguistic complexity. Currently, I am working on this problem with respect to functional overlap within the structure of words mainly in the languages of southern New Guinea.  My research is grounded in traditional qualitative linguistics (typology and description) enhanced with mathematical models to make explicit the assumptions and practices of these approaches. I see linguistics as an empirical science and I work with data primarily drawn firsthand from fieldwork embedded within community-directed language documentation.  


Researcher's projects

Past projects

2017-2019. A typology of distributed exponence. Newton International Fellowship. Funder: British Academy. Host: Surrey Morphology Group, University of Surrey, UK.

Current student projects

I am a member of the Supervisory Committees of these PhD students:

  • Aarin Tirza Sirima. PhD thesis: Middles in Austronesian languages. 
  • Tina Gregor. PhD thesis: A Documentation and Description of Yelmek (a Papuan language of Southern New Guinea)

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Updated:  17 January 2021 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers