The ability to use a language to communicate is a complex skill. It requires the ability to structure knowledge, encode and decode linguistic signals, and use them in the right context and situation. Progress in our understanding of the structure, acquisition and use of language in fulfilling the communicative needs of an increasingly complex, often multlingual society can only be made if we can arrive at an analysis of the factors involved and the way they interact.

Each of these disciplines focuses on one particular aspect of the interpretative process of linking form and meaning. While empirical and theoretical research within linguistics is the ‘core business’ of the LOT institutes, they also participate actively in joint research with other disciplines such as logic, computer science, neuroscience, biology, psychology and sociology.