School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

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Image of Tomislav Stojanov

Tomislav Stojanov

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Individual Fellow, Faculty of Arts



My academic career began in 2000 at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Uni. of Zagreb in language research from a perspective of information sciences and computational linguistics. In 2005, I moved to the Institute of Croatian Language and Linguistics, where I started working on corpus linguistics and the creation of the Croatian Language Corpus.

A career in sociolinguistics and language standardization began in 2008-2009, when I had my first papers published on (i) computational morphology (as part of the development of a spelling checker of Croatian) and (ii) historic and modern punctuation. During 2012-2013, I was working with the other co-authors on the new Croatian Orthographic Manual.

I defended my Ph.D. thesis in 2015 (Linguographic planning and E-Literacy in Croatian [in Croatian]), in which I described the relationship between orthography and language policy in several languages (with a special focus in Croatian). My primary interest has been in research on orthography and language policy & planning since then.

In March 2021, I commenced my postdoctoral research at the School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies of the University of Nottingham, funded by the European Commission's Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship.


Last updated on 22 July 2021. I declare all data stated here are true.

The list of bibliographic references is a selection of my writing.

Follow me on my Twitter account (@Tomi_Stojanov).

YouTube channel link here.

Expertise Summary

Current focus:

  1. Sociolinguistics
    • orthographic standardization (spelling changes & reforms, spelling reforms conflicts)
    • language policy and planning (legislation, language ideology)
  2. Science policy
    • researcher mental health (academic bullying, academic whistleblowing)
    • responsible research environment (academic freedom of speech and dissemination, language rights, research funding)

Teaching Summary

From October 2005 to July 2014, I was a senior lecturer of three courses at the Zagreb University of Applied Sciences, Information Technologies Study, Croatia. Courses (held in Croatian): Culture of… read more

Research Summary

Since the beginning of mass education, standard languages have been undergoing spelling reforms/changes that produce controversies to lesser or greater extent, most recently in Czech, Dutch, French,… read more

Recent Publications

Fellowships and Short-term mobilities

  1. Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Individual Fellowship (MSCA-IF) 2019. University of Nottingham, UK. Mentor Prof. N. McLelland. 1 March 2021 - 28 February 2023
  2. COST Action IS1401. Short-term Scientific Mission. School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies, University of Nottingham, UK. Research title: The role of orthography in the three social psychology theories: proof of concept for the project proposal writing. Mentor Prof N. McLelland. 3 - 12 July 2018
  3. COST Action IS1305. Short-term Scientific Mission. Centre for Language Resources and Technologies, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. Research title: Analysis of the dictionary use survey. Mentor Dr S. Krek and Dr I. Kosem. 4 - 10 October 2017
  4. COST Action IS1401. Short-term Scientific Mission. Institut für Deutsche Sprache (now: Das Leibniz-Institut für Deutsche Sprache), Mannheim, Germany. Research title: Multilingual orthographic literacy and competencies in a digital world. Mentor Dr R. Schneider. 10 - 28 October 2016
  5. COST Action IS1305. Short-term Scientific Mission. Fryske Akademy and Instituut vor nederlandse lexicologie (now: The Instituut voor de Nederlandse Taal [the Institute for Dutch Language]), Leeuwarden and Leiden, the Nederlands. Research title: Orthographic dictionaries and orthography data in European languages. Mentor Dr F. van der Kuip (Leeuwarden) and Dr T. Schoonheim (Leiden). 30 March - 30 April 2015
  6. British Scholarship Trust. Centre for Corpus Linguistics (now Centre for Corpus Research), University of Birmingham, UK. 1 - 30 April 2004


  1. European Commission's Seal of Excellence for the project proposal submitted under the Horizon 2020's Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions call H2020-MSCA-IF-2018 of 12 September 2018 by Tomislav Stojanov and the University of Nottingham.
  2. Ivan Filipović Award by the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport of the Republic of Croatia in the field of scientific and professional work in 2013 (as one of the authors of the Croatian Orthographic Manual).
  3. Rector's Award by the University of Zagreb (for the study The corpus of -ice adverbs in Croatian) in 1995.

Commissions of Trust

  1. Working Group Policy Vice-Chair of the Marie Curie Alumni Association. 1 March 2020 - 1 March 2022
  2. Member of the Council for Lexicography of the Department of Philological Sciences at the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Since 28 October 2019
  3. Editorial Board member for Croatian of the PCL-Press Publishing House. Since 15 December 2019
  4. Appointed curator for Croatian at the European Dictionary Portal. Since 1 June 2017
  5. Board Member of the Council for Croatian Language Lecturers at the Universities Abroad (Cro. Odbor za lektorate) of the Ministry of Science and Education, the Republic of Croatia. 8 June 2017 - 8 June 2019
  6. Board Member of the Technical Committee for the field of Terminology ISO/TC 37 of the Croatian Standards Institute. 1 January 2014 - 1 February 2016

Public outreach

  1. Presentation of the successful Croatian MSCA fellows at the Horizon Europe Info Day - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action Postdoctoral Fellows organized by the Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes of the Ministry of Science and Education of the Republic of Croatia. 22 Apr 2021. Programme and video.
  2. Column article for, independent webzine. Možemo li očekivati da će se znanosti u RH dogoditi reforma? [Is science reform going to happen to Croatia?]. 19 Apr 2021
  3. Contribution to the Marie Curie Alumni Association's policy position to the European Commission's roadmap for the Communication on the Global Approach to Research, Innovation, Education and Youth. 9 Apr 2021
  4. Talk at the Marie Curie Alumni Association 2021 Annual Conference. The Development of the Croatian National Strategy for Research and Innovation 2017-2021: lessons learned (online). 6 Mar 2021.
  5. Article for Vijenac. Književni list za umjetnost, kulturu i znanost [Vijenac. Literary Magazin for Arts, Culture and Science]. Pogled u budućnost hrvatske znanosti [A look into the future of Croatian Science]. Vol. 703, pp. 8-9. 11 Feb 2021.
  6. Article for, an independent internet magazine. Kako je moguće planirati 2030. ako ne znamo postojeće stanje [How is it possible to plan the year 2030 if we do not know the current situation?]. 8 Feb 2021.
  7. Interview for Universitas - hrvatske sveučilišne novine [the Croatian Academic Magazine]. Headline: Znanstvenicima je neprocjenjivo svako međunarodno usavršavanje [Any international training is priceless for researchers]. Interviewed by Branko Nađ. Volume 135. Year XIII. Pages 28-30. 25 Jan 2021.
  8. Contribution during the public consultation on the National Development Strategy of the Republic of Croatia until 2030. 16 Nov 2020.
  9. Interview for Research Professional News. Interviewed by Robin Bisson. Headline: My winning proposal: Persistence pays off. 12 Nov 2020.
  10. Contribution to the letter to EU Commissioner Gabriel, press release statement and co-organization of the joint press conference Impact of COVID-19 and budget cuts on the next generation of EU researchers. Marie Curie Alumni Association (MCAA), Initiative for Science in Europe (ISE), the Young Academy of Europe (YAE) and Eurodoc. 28 Sep 2020.
  11. Contribution to the press release statement Researchers concerned with the proposed substantial cuts in the EU budget from 2021 to 2027 for European research and innovation. Marie Curie Alumni Association. 3 Sep 2020.

From October 2005 to July 2014, I was a senior lecturer of three courses at the Zagreb University of Applied Sciences, Information Technologies Study, Croatia. Courses (held in Croatian): Culture of the Croatian Language, Language and Computation, Introduction to (X)HTML and CSS.

Current Research

Since the beginning of mass education, standard languages have been undergoing spelling reforms/changes that produce controversies to lesser or greater extent, most recently in Czech, Dutch, French, German, and Portuguese in the 1990s. Attempts by governmen­­­­ts or other authoritative bodies to change the official orthography inevitably meet resistance. The resistance often leads to social divisions and conflicts manifested in activities such as public protests, boycotts, and even referendums (German). Some leading researchers have even used the word 'betrayal' (for Dutch) or 'war' (for Czech) to rhetorically depict level of conflicts.

The complex language-identity relations among the speakers of the South Slavonic languages are my core motivations for studies. I believe researching orthography can shed valuable light on its role in the (de-)construction of nations and regions.

The over-arching objective is to produce a descriptive model of orthographic controversies of the selected group of South Slavonic languages in the 1990s and onwards, which will take into account the European languages with recent history of spelling reforms/changes.

The title of my present MSCA-IF postdoctoral research funded by the European Commission with €224,933.76 is Understanding spelling conflicts. A case study of new standard languages in the former Yugoslavia in the European context (SPELLFLICT). Find more details on the Cordis website. Supervisor: Prof Nicola McLelland.

Future Research

I welcome collaboration and networking with other peers on the issue of spelling reforms and conflicts in any world language.

I particularly welcome discussion with the experts in anthropological linguistics, evolutionary biology, and social Darwinism on language evolution.

School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

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