About

I am CSO at Possible Worlds Research, a non-profit initiative dedicated to developing energy-efficient and cognitively plausible AI models. I also run Denotation UG, a small company invested in bringing sustainable AI systems to the real world. Previously, I was assistant professor at the Center for Mind/Brain Sciences, University of Trento (Italy).

My research is situated at the junction of computational semantics, cognitive science and AI. In Trento, I led the ‘Computational Approaches to Language and Meaning’ (CALM) group, focusing on formalising the systematic correspondence between language and the world. My work on the acquisition of meaning also led me to develop an interest for computational models that learn from small data – just like humans. This line of research developed into a wider interest in energy-efficient AI systems. You can check out my publication list here and my full CV is here.

Short bio

It took me a little while to come to computational linguistics, having first worked in a toy shop, in a bookstore, as a mortgage adviser and as a research funding administrator before realising that my real vocation was semantics. I then obtained a PhD in Natural Language Processing from the University of Cambridge. Subsequently, I was an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow in Potsdam, and a postdoc in Cambridge, Stuttgart, and the Center for Mind/Brain Sciences in Trento. I briefly moved to the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona as a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow and returned to Trento in 2018 as a faculty member. In 2023, I left academia to found Possible Worlds Research and Denotation UG because I wanted to provide an alternative to the dominant discourse about AI.

My favourite part-of-speech is the determiner.

Community service

2020 - Area chair for ACL 2020.
2018-2019 Co-organiser of SemEval 2019 and 2020.
2019 - Area chair for CLIC-It 2019.
2019 - Student Research Workshop Faculty Advisor for ACL 2019.
2018 - Area chair for COLING 2018.
2017 - Program co-chair for *SEM 2017.
2015 - Area chair for ‘Formal and linguistic semantics’ for *SEM 2015.
2015 - Co-chair for Language and Computation at ESSLLI 2015.
2013 - Instigator and co-chair of the workshop Towards a formal distributional semantics, co-located with IWCS 2013.