In her research Contreras-García attempted to determine the extent to which different formalisations of language (different theories of language) are similar or differ with regard to the way in which they represent the same syntactic phenomena (e.g. the nonexpression or ellipsis of semantic content). This is reflected in whether mismatches are created between the various representational strata (the formalization of meaning and that of form in different theories), and whether empty categories are used (posited elements that 'exist' in the formalization of a given theory of language but that have no corresponding element in 'real' language -what we say or hear-, similar to void groups in mathematics).
She found that the theoretical and cognitive adequacy of a theory of language diminishes with the existence of empty categories in the formalisation of posited linguistic elements that have no hearable or readable counterpart.
Ms Lucia Contreras-García: Grammar in 3D: On Linguistic Theory Design
Supervisor is Prof. P.C. Hengeveld and the co-supervisor is Dr García Velasco.
The ceremony is open to the general public.