ECDI Update: November 2022 activities

This is a monthly update about the Evolution of Cultural Diversity Initiative (ECDI) activities and upcoming events.


Ray Tobler’s  Ancient DNA reveals a hidden history of human adaptation, The Conversation 1 November 

ECDI HDR candidate Anna Naupa’s community-based research initiative has launched a book on traditional ocean stories and culture from her home island of Erromango, in southern Vanuatu. Netai en Namou Toc (Stories of Mother Ocean) is the result of an ongoing collaboration between community elders, chiefs and cultural workers, drawing on oral traditions and academic relationships to produce a rich compilation of custom stories, traditional ocean knowledge and a wind map in Sye, English and French languages. It is the first of its kind for Vanuatu, as two community elders attest in this video clip:

Next SYNAPSE Seminar – Cultural evolution of birdsong: How environments help shape the dawn chorus, Dominique Potin, 5 Dec, 2pm, in person and via zoom. Register via Eventbrite

Congratulations to Ray Tobler and Simon Haberle on being included in the new Centre of Excellence for Indigenous and Environmental Histories and Futuresadministered out of James Cook University to be led by Prof Sean Ulm and set to begin December 2023

Read about the success stories out of the Mornington fieldschool – A feather in CHL’s cap: Mornington fieldschool leads to industry employment for students and Partnerships with industry and Traditional Owners, 10 November

Shimona Kealy recently gave a fantastic online information session about How ECRs can promote their researchThe link to the recording is here, and the password is: T+K+Ja^YlqD9

Congratulations to Lindell Bromham on securing an ARC Discovery Project for 2023:
This project aims to illuminate the role of variation in mutation rate in driving evolutionary change. Mutation rate is a core parameter in evolutionary analyses in essential applications including epidemiology, conservation and medicine, yet remains a “black box” given arbitrary universal values. This project will take a whole-of-biodiversity approach to understanding the forces shaping mutation rate, impact on evolution of biodiversity and effect on accuracy and precision of phylogenetic analyses. Using Australian case studies, the expected outcome of this project will be a greater understanding variation in mutation rate between species, providing significant benefits in developing more sophisticated and reliable phylogenetic analyses. ($399,410)

And for a project with Xia Hua and Marcel Cardillo:
This project aims to develop an innovative approach that integrates diverse data sources, from genetic sequences to geographic distributions, to improve inference of evolutionary dynamics. This will provide a powerful and efficient new method for understanding species’ responses to climate change, demonstrated by inferring past, current and future climate adaptability in a diverse and ecologically important Australian plant family. Expected outcomes include enrichment of evolutionary theory and software tools to assess species’ vulnerability to climate change. These outcomes will bring significant benefits to improve knowledge and protection of Australian biota and maximise returns on Australia’s investment in biodiversity databases. ($388,000)


Seminars, Workshops, Conferences

International Symposium on Bilingualism 14 – Diversity Now 
Abstracts due: 30 November 
The 14th International Symposium on Bilingualism will take place on 26-30 June 2023 at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. The theme of the conference is Diversity Now. The United Nations General Assembly has declared the period between 2022 and 2032 as the International Decade of Indigenous Languages to draw attention to the critical status of many Indigenous languages across the world and to encourage action for their preservation, revitalisation, and promotion. ISB14 especially encourages submissions of work involving lesser-studied bilingual communities and interdisciplinary work examining bilingualism across cultures, societies, and the life-span. 
We invite abstracts for two categories of submissions: individual papers and posters. Find more information here 

Wednesday 13 – Thursday 14 December 2022
. Symposium: Murrudha: Sovereign Walks (Track #3)/ Still in my mind: Gurindji location, experience and visuality, Drill Hall Gallery, ANU School of Music. Find more information and register here

  • Tuesday 13 December 2022, 11:00am (AEDT). Panel 1: Plenary session – Sovereign actions, diverse reflections, past & present, Dr Brenda L Croft, Dr Aunty Matilda House, Jim-puralia Everett-meenamatta, Dr Valerie Cooms, Monica Morgan. 
  • Wednesday 14 December 2022, 11:00am (AEDT). Panel 2. Collaborative partnerships: Artists, art centres, communities, universities – creative-led research, Professor Brenda L Croft, Dr Felicity Meakins, Leah Leaman, Penny Smith, Justin Paddy, Timothy Donald. 

ANU Linguistics Seminar
Wednesday 14 December 2022, 11:00am (AEDT). Linguistics Seminar: A computational Typology of Morphological Exponence, Dr Sacha Beniamine, University of Surrey. Engma Room, HC Coombs Building, Australian National University. For more information, contact CoEDL postdoc M Carroll via email

2023 International Symposium on Communication in Healthcare 
14-15 February 2023 
The 2023 International Symposium on Communication in Healthcare: Communicating for Patient Safety: Translating Health Communication Research into Clinical Practice, Education & Training will be hosted by the ANU Institute for Communication in Health Care and co-hosted with QUT Health Research Network and the International Consortium for Communication in Healthcare
Find more information here and register to attend here


Job/Funding Opportunities

Laura Bassi Scholarship
Deadline 1 December 2022
The Laura Bassi Scholarship was established by Editing Press in 2018 with the aim of providing editorial assistance to postgraduates and junior academics whose research focuses on neglected topics of study, broadly construed. The scholarships are open to every discipline and the next round of funding will be awarded in Winter 2022:

Winter 2022
Application deadline: 1 December 2022
Results: 13 December 2022

All currently enrolled master’s and doctoral candidates are eligible to apply, as are academics in the first five years of full-time employment. Applicants are required to submit a completed application form along with their CV through the application portal by the relevant deadline. Further details, including previous winners, and the application portal can be found at:

Lecturer in Historical Linguistics, Yale University 
Deadline: 2 December 2022 
The Department of Linguistics at Yale University is looking to hire a multi-year Lecturer in Historical Linguistics, with an initial 3-year appointment, beginning July 1, 2023, and the possibility of renewal for a second 3-year term. The Lecturer will offer introductory and advanced courses and advise student research in historical linguistics/language change at the undergraduate and graduate levels. 
Find more information and apply online here

Assistant Professor in Linguistics, specializing in typology and cognitive linguistics, University of New Mexico 
Deadline: 15 December 2022 
The Department of Linguistics at the University of New Mexico invites applications for the position of Assistant Professor in Linguistics, specializing in typology and cognitive linguistics, to begin in August 2023. This is a full-time, tenure-track position. Applicants must have a PhD in Linguistics or a related field by date of appointment. The UNM Department of Linguistics is particularly concerned with the study of languages native to the Americas, signed languages, and varieties of Spanish. Find more information and apply online here

Foundation for Endangered Languages Grants 
Deadline: 31 December 2022 
The annual grant round for projects that will support, enable or assist the use of one or more endangered languages is now open. FEL is committed to raising awareness of endangered languages throughout the world and supporting their revitalisation and preservation. Find more information and apply here

Two PhD Fellowships, The International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) 
Deadline: 2 January 2023 
The International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) for Language Sciences is offering two fully-funded PhD Fellowship for four years (2023-2027) with a preferred start-date in September or October, 2023. Find more information and apply online here

Research Fellow / Senior Research Fellow in Infant Studies, MARCS Institute for Brain Behaviour and Development 
Deadline: 15 January 2023 
The MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development is seeking to appoint an outstanding and innovative scholar to complement and strengthen our research in Infant Studies. This is a full-time, fixed-term position for 3 years based at the Westmead Campus, located in the Westmead Health and Medical Research Precinct. Find more information and apply here

PhD studentship, Surrey Morphology Group 
Deadline: 31 January 2023 
The Surrey Morphology Group is offering a PhD studentship on project about analogy in morphological change, funded by the Leverhulme Trust. The student will be responsible for conducting a case study into morphological change in the history of a specific language. They will design their own project using the dataset they have collected, developing research questions and hypotheses relating to the theme of analogy in morphological change. The student will be supervised by Professor Matthew Baerman, Dr Oliver Bond and Dr Helen Sims-Williams, and will work and receive training in the vibrant research environment of the Surrey Morphology Group, alongside leading researchers on inflectional morphology. 
Find more information here

PhD scholarship, Charles Darwin University 
Deadline: 28 February 2022 
CDU is offering a PhD scholarship to work on a project investigating the mathematical affordances of Australian Indigenous languages and to identify and develop the language required to teach and learn school mathematics in Australian Indigenous languages. Find more information and apply online here



Perfors, A. and Kidd, E. 2022. The Role of Stimulus-Specific Perceptual Fluency in Statistical Learning. Cogn Sci, vol.46, no.2, pp. e13100-. https://doi:10.1111/cogs.13100

Souilmi, Y., Tobler, R., Johar, A., Teixeria, J., et al. 2022. Admixture has obscured signals of historical hard sweeps in humans. Nat Ecol Evol.

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