The Modena and Reggio Emilia research group works on language variation across several dimensions: disciplines, genres and local cultures. The researchers are engaged in the analysis of forms of two main areas: academic discourse - with a special emphasis on the humanities and the social sciences - and professional discourse - ranging from corporate to legal discourse. Special attention is paid to the role of language in knowledge dissemination and to the impact of new media on communicative genres.
Textuality and phraseology are key interests. Recent studies centre on aspects of writer's voice, attribution, discourse markers and evaluative language, as well as the key-words, key-phrases, lexico-semantic and lexico- grammatical features characterizing different discourses. A further area of investigation is the comparative analysis of dialogical features of academic writing and specialized media discourse in different settings and cultures.
In a pedagogic perspective, the research group aims at building materials based on small and specialized corpora to exploit their potential for autonomous learning.