I hold the chair of General Linguistics and am department head in the Institute of Linguistics at the University of Bern. My current work focuses on morphological typology and grammatical voice, and my recent work has centered around morphosyntactic clause alignment, as well as benefaction and malefaction. I have specialized in the indigenous languages of the Americas (especially the Algonquian languages of North America and Mapudungun in the Southern Cone), but I am also very much interested in Basque, Insular Celtic, West Germanic, and Iberian Romance.
I also hold a degree in economics and worked for some years at Swiss Re, the largest Swiss reinsurer. I am very interested in literature — especially highbrow fiction in English and Spanish, well-written speculative fiction in any language, and many things related to 221B Baker Street. Lastly, I was a piano teacher and pianist from the late 1980s until the early 2000s.