Professor Randy LaPolla
- Post Nominals: FAHA
- Fellow Type: Corresponding Fellow
- Elected to the Academy: 2008
Randy J. LaPolla, PhD (UC Berkeley) 1990, worked six years at Academia Sinica, then eight years at City University of Hong Kong, currently Chair of Linguistics and Director of Research Centre for Linguistic Typology, La Trobe University. President of Australian Linguistic Society, Vice President of International Association for Bilingual Studies, Editor of international refereed journal Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area, Associate Editor of Journal of Sino-Tibetan Linguistics. His research mainly on the documentation and analysis of Sino-Tibetan languages, and attempting to answer the question of why the languages of this language family are the way they are. An interest in typology and pragmatics informs this work. From this work he has also developed answers to more general theoretical questions, such as the nature of language and its function in communication.