Our group, which formed in Fall 2013, currently consists of four linguists from three different CUNY colleges:
Cecelia Cutler, Lehman College and The Graduate Center
Bill Haddican, Queens College and The Graduate Center
Michael Newman, Queens College and The Graduate Center
Christina Tortora, College of Staten Island and The Graduate Center
The members of this group have different theoretical backgrounds (sociolinguistics, social theory, education, language change, phonetics, syntactic theory, microparametric syntactic variation); we also have experience with a range of different languages (Spanish, Catalan, Basque, Italian dialects, English dialects), and with different research methodologies (experimental work using questionnaires, fieldwork using grammaticality judgment tasks, sociolinguistc-style interviewing, corpus research).
Yet at a meeting in Fall 2013, we all realized that underlying our different backgrounds was a common core: we’re interested in language variation and change, we’re interested in intra-speaker variability, and we believe that all kinds of theoretical questions arising within the many sub-disciplines of Linguistics can be fruitfully addressed through the creation and exploration of large annotated corpora.
Our teaching lives and where we live also compel us to study the English of New York City. We all live here (Brooklyn, Staten Island, Manhattan), we all teach at CUNY (Lehman College [The Bronx], Queens College, the College of Staten Island, and The Graduate Center [Manhattan]), and we all love learning about New York City English from our undergraduates (most of whom are New Yorkers themselves).
This is how we became the New York City English Research Group. Our first pilot project is the Corpus of New York City English (CoNYCE); feel free to go to the link above for further information!