SSWL is a searchable database that allows users to discover which properties (morphological, syntactic, and semantic) characterize a language, as well as how these properties relate across languages. This system is designed to be free to the public and open-ended. Anyone can use the database to perform queries.

Site Statistics

  • Number of Languages: 276
  • Number of Languages over 90%: 24
  • Number of Contributors: 420
  • Number of Properties: 148
  • Number of Examples: 4556
  • Number of Property:Value Pairs: 19574

Related Resources

To learn more about the objectives of SSWL, please visit the original workshop site or watch our tutorial video.

To read about early updates, please visit our Google Group, (which is no longer actively used).

This site hosts the original prototype SSWL, launched June 1 2009.

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June 20 2014: 19 New properties posted: nominal properties in object position.

General introduction of the properties (w01a/b/c/ (d)-w06ab/c) link to (file 0 General introduction), a pdf file for offline entry (for contributors who have little or no access to the net, or find the task otherwise challenging).

Excel file or Word file to help prepare for data entry and examples most efficiently.


Guidelines for Language Experts

Guidelines for Property Authors

Citation Guidelines

Description of Search Interface

SSWL Glossary

SSWL Homework Assignment for Introduction to Linguistics (written by Jim Wood)

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Creators: Chris Collins and Richard Kayne (NYU)
Architect: Dennis Shasha (NYU)
Senior Editor: Hilda Koopman (UCLA)
Consultant: Chris Collins (NYU)

Past Project Coordinator: Chris Collins (till 09/2011)
Past Language Coordinator: Ken Hagiwara

Back-End: Sangeeta Vishwanath, Hiral Rajani, Jillian Kozyra, Bosh
Front-End: Jessica Chen
Usability Testing: Norman King

UCLA undergraduate research assistants: Michael A Estrada, Timothy Ho and Bryan Villa (Fall 2011)

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This material is based in part upon an NSF grant Grant No. BCS-0817202 (SGER: Prototype and Specifications for a Web-based Database of the Syntactic Structures of the World's Languages (SSWL) (2008, with a supplement in 2009). Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation (NSF).

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