Chair of General Linguistics and French Linguistics, University of Basel
I was born on the shores of Lago Maggiore, in Ticino, the Italian-speaking, southern part of Switzerland, in 1963.
After studying at the University of Fribourg (1982-1986), I worked as a teaching and research assistant at the universities of Lausanne, Fribourg and Neuchâtel. I spent a year in Paris at EHESS (1991-1992) and I completed my PhD in January 1994 (Univ. of Lausanne). In my PhD I investigate the description of space in travelogues. This led to my interest in practices of space formulation in spoken language and talk, as I increasingly became involved in researching naturally occurring recorded social interactions.
In 1996, I spent a sabbatical semester in the Anthropology Department at the University of California Berkeley. From 1996 to 2001, I was appointed Assistant Professor at the University of Basel, where I obtained my Habilitation in 2000. While there, I directed a research project on the interactional production of knowledge in plurilingual research teams, based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork and data collection in various scientific and medical departments. During this time, I became interested in talk at work and in workplace practices, as well as in the ways in which grammar is both a resource for interaction and emerges within its sequential organization.
In 2001 I was awarded the National Latsis Prize – a prize awarded annually in Switzerland to the top researcher under 40.
I moved to Lyon in 2001 to take up a position as Professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Lyon 2. In January 2007, I was appointed Director of the ICAR Research Lab (a unit supported by CNRS, University of Lyon 2, and Ecole Nationale Supérieure). In Lyon, I have developed analyses of the linguistic and multimodal resources for the sequential organization of interaction, along with new projects on talk at work.
In January 2012, I have been appointed as Chair in General Linguistics and French Linguistics at the University of Basel.