Symposium on Asymmetric Interactions

Welcome to the Homepage of the Bielefeld Symposium on Asymmetric Interactions, to be held at CITEC (Bielefeld University) on the 30th and 31st of May, 2011.

Symposium Programme

How to get there

The Call for Contributions can be downloaded at the bottom of the page.

The symposium aims at bringing together researchers interested and/ or active in the field of interaction analysis to discuss and exchange ideas around one general topic: Adaptive processes in asymmetric interactions.

Asymmetric interactions are interactions in which the interacting parties have different communicative and cognitive resources at their disposal. Such interactions could occur between mother and infant, teacher and student, expert and novice, between typically and atypically developed partners, between humans and other animals, and between humans and technical systems, robots or artificial agents. Due to the different expectations and capabilities of the parties involved, these interactions need to undergo active adaptive processes in order to be successful and achieve a sense of mutuality or understanding.

Within the present symposium we shall look into various asymmetric interactional settings and address questions along the following lines:

  • What are the adaptive processes at play within these various types of interactions?
  • How do they unfold over time?
  • Are there any strategies to be found across interactional settings?
  • How does culture affect adaptive behavior?
  • Which are the communicative resources used by interacting partners?
  • Which methods can be used to best capture these processes?
  • What can we learn from non-human species?

Invited Speakers

  • Carolin Demuth, Culture and Development, University of Osnabrueck, Germany
  • Anna Filipi, Education Faculty, Monash University, Victoria Australia
  • Michael Forrester, School of Psychology, University of Kent, UK
  • Joan Murphy, Talking Mats Research and Development Centre, University of Sterling, UK
  • Karola Pitsch, Applied Informatics & CoR-Lab, Bielefeld University, Germany
  • Federico Rossano, Developmental and Comparative Psychology Group, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany


Important Dates

Abstract submission March 25
Notification of acceptance March 31
Registration open April 1
Symposium May 30-31

Symposium Programme


CITEC Graduate School

Organizing Committee

Iris Nomikou, Emergentist Semantics Group, CITEC, Bielefeld University
Katharina J. Rohlfing, Emergentist Semantics Group, CITEC, Bielefeld University


or any further information please contact Iris Nomikou at: