Ulla Vanhatalo

My research focuses on lexical semantics, which means I study word meanings. I’m also very interested in the methods used in lexical semantics.  I’m Finnish, but I’ve lived nine years outside of Finland.  This has infuenced my research topics. In my PhD thesis, I studied how people describe meaning differences between synonyms. In the recent years, I’ve been studying Natural Semantic Metalanguage (NSM). The idea of NSM is that in all languages, there are ca. 65 simple primitive words which can be used for explaining pretty much everything. Now I want to compare NSM and easy-to-read. There are many exiting questions in the easy-to-read vocabulary: Are there some words that are easier to use than others? Are some words easier to understand? Is there a way how easy-to-read languages could benefit from NSM?