Wataru Uegaki


  • Linguistics and English Language
  • School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences

Contact details



Room 2.10, Dugald Stewart Building

3 Charles Street, Edinburgh
Post code


  • Office hours: 10-11am Monday. Please feel free to drop by my office at any other time or contact me by email to schedule a meeting.


  • 2019-: Lecturer, University of Edinburgh 
  • 2016-2019: Assistant Professor, Leiden University
  • 2015-2016: Postdoctoral Fellow, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Keio University (Tokyo) & Institut Jean Nicod, CNRS/ENS (Paris)
  • 2015: Ph.D., MIT Linguistics
  • 2010: M.A., University of Tokyo
  • 2008: B.A., University of Tokyo

Undergraduate teaching

  • Contributor to pre-honours "Linguistics and English Language 1B" (6 hours)
  • Honours "Current Issues in Semantics and Pragmatics" (co-taught with Rob Truswell)

Postgraduate teaching

  • MSc "Introduction to Semantics and Pragmatics"

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Current PhD students supervised

  • Takanobu Nakamura

Research summary

I am a researcher of formal semantics and pragmatics. That is, I study how humans draw various inferences from conversations in natural language, and I try to understand systems governing such human behaviors using theoretical tools made available by linguisticslogic and cognitive science.

Specifically, I am interested in the relationship between word meanings and grammatical rules. My MIT PhD dissertation "Interpreting questions under attitudes" addresses a family of puzzles concerning how the meanings of the so-called propositional attitude verbs (such as "believe", "know", "surprise" and "wonder") are related to the types of complement clauses they can combine with (for example, whether the verb can combine with a question or not).

Current research interests

I am interested in the distinction between ‘logical’ words (such as "every" and "or") and ‘non-logical’ words (such as "walk" and "bird"). Is there a fundamental distinction between how these two kinds of word meanings are represented in our mind? I try to address this question by investigating the manifestation of this distinction in syntax-semantics interface (i.e., the relationship between meaning and grammar) and cross-linguistic universals in word meanings (i.e., what kind of common properties hold for word meanings across languages).

View all 22 publications on Research Explorer