Marianna Bolognesi’s research focuses on lexical semantics and multimodal communication, and in particular on the relation between language and thought, and on the semantic representation of word meaning in mind. Currently she is working on the representation and processing of abstract concepts (e.g., "excellence", "democracy", "joy", that is, concepts denoting intangible entities) and on the role of metaphor and metonymy in the process of conceptual abstraction. She uses experimental methods that bridge psychological investigation with computational (corpus-driven) modelling.
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Dr Bolognesi collaborates with various international institutions. Among them, she collaborates with the Creative Multilingualism group at the University of Oxford, where she worked for 2 years (2017-2019) and with the Metaphor Lab Amsterdam, where she worked for two years (2015-2017) with an EU Marie S. Curie fellowship. Here she still coordinates the research area on Metaphor and Multimodality.