Linguistic Research Infrastructure

Background to the LiRI

The Linguistics Center Zurich (LiZZ), the University Research Program Language and Space (URPP Language and Space), and the associated laboratories and institutes of the UZH joined forces to obtain funding for a pioneering improvement of their research facilities. This has resulted in the Linguistic Research Infrastructure (LiRI) project. LiRI enables scientific work with international scope in linguistics and puts Switzerland at the forefront of experimental and Big Data-based research.

LiRI Services

Behind the LiRI project you find a highly qualified team that offers UZH researchers and external partners technical and practical support for projects in linguistics and related disciplines. The services provided by LiRI fall into three main categories:

Data collection: The LiRI laboratory (Campus Oerlikon, Andreasstrasse 15, 8050) provides equipment and software for generating and collecting linguistic research data. The facilities can be used by researchers or other users interested in natural language data (i.e., audiovisual, textual, and speech data), as well as by language researchers working with experimental data (e.g., eye-tracking, electroencephalography, behavioral research). Some of the research equipment is suitable for use in the field and can be borrowed.

Data management: LiRI can set up and manage customized virtual machine (VM) servers for processing, analyzing, storing, and backing up linguistic research data. These VM servers are part of the University of Zurich's ScienceCloud environment and are accessible both within the UZH network and globally. Additional software can be installed for specific research requirements. Access to the servers can be customized so that, for example, data can only be accessed by a specific research group or specific users. These data management services are not limited to researchers who use LiRI facilities to collect their data. Linguists who want to analyze and cache their self-collected data can also use the LiRI server infrastructure. Since mid-2021, publication-ready data can be fed directly from LiRI into the SWISSUBase infrastructure, a national center for research data in Switzerland. The data will then be available to international research infrastructures such as CLARIN.

Collaboration and support: the Linguistic Research Infrastructure provides technical and methodological support to researchers in collecting, processing, and analyzing the linguistic data they need. The infrastructure needs of a project can be discussed in an initial, free consultation. Depending on the complexity of the project, support can range from occasional guidance to LiRI taking over all data collection and processing.