The research carried out by the members of the LANCAR group comprises four interrelated projects with prospected applications in argumentation technology. Coordinating the research projects in this way enables the LANCAR members and research affiliates to optimally benefit from each other’s expertise and to fruitfully collaborate in a cross-disciplinary group centered around the ubiquitous and fascinating phenomenon of argumentation.
First, psycho-linguistic theories of language processing and associated research methods (e.g., self-paced reading, eye tracking, EEG) are used to gain insights into people’s immediate and, in part, unconscious responses to arguments of different types and forms, thus initiating a cross-disciplinary research area named Psycho-Argumentation.
The empirical results are combined, in the second project, with theoretical insights so as to develop a reliable and transparent procedure for Argument-Checking. This procedure enables human annotation of corpora of argumentative texts in various communicative domains and facilitates a more objective measuring of people’s competence in assessing and producing arguments.
The third project entails a robust formalization of linguistic and pragmatic aspects of argumentative discourse in terms of the representation framework of Constructive Adpositional Argumentation (CxAdArg), thus providing input for experiments in psycho-argumentation and preparing implementation in argumentation technology.
Fourth, research into the Philosophy of Argument is aimed at providing historically and empirically informed accounts of the various theoretical concepts relevant to the study of argumentation (e.g., argumentation structure, argument type, stock issue, and fallacy) and at exploring modifications and extensions of traditional definitions of argument (e.g., to metaphor, narration, visual and multimodal argumentation, and polylogue).