Paul Vogt (2007) Group size effects on the emergence of compositional structures in language In F. Almeida e Costa et al. (Eds.) Proceedings of ECAL 2007 Springer.
Abstract This paper presents computer simulations which investigate the effect that different group sizes have on the emergence of compositional structures in languages. The simulations are based on a model that integrates the language game model with the iterated learning model. The simulations show that compositional structures tend to emerge more extensively for larger groups, which has a positive effect on the time in which the languages develop and on communicative success, which may even have an optimal group size. A mathematical analysis of the time of convergence is presented that provides an approximate explanation of the results. The paper concludes that increasing group sizes among humans could not only have triggered the origins of language, but also facilitated the evolution of more complex languages.