Professor Robert Blackwood is a specialist in French sociolinguistics with research and teaching interests within the broad field of linguistics and language studies. Professor Blackwood's primary research interest is the linguistic landscape, and in particular regional languages of France in the linguistic landscape. He is the Editor of the journal 'Linguistic Landscape' alongside Professor Elana Shohamy (Tel Aviv University), and co-organised the Eighth Linguistic Landscape Workshop which took place in Liverpool in 2016. Professor Blackwood has published widely on Corsican sociolinguistics, which was the subject of his first monograph. His second book, co-authored with Dr Stefania Tufi from the Italian subject area, investigated the linguistic landscapes of French and Italian Mediterranean coastal cities. Professor Blackwood also publishes on language and new media (including social media) from the perspective of the French language, and he also undertakes research into questions of language policy.
Professor Blackwood supervises doctoral research in the area of sociolinguistics, with specific interests in the Linguistic Landscape, language policy, and digital discourse, In addition to his work in francophone contexts, Professor Blackwood has supervised PhDs looking at sociolinguistic questions in the Middle East, including Jordan, Algeria, and Kuwait.
Professor Blackwood is currently primary supervisor for three research students: Jasem Eidan, writing a PhD on sacred and secular linguistic landscapes in Kuwait; Imene Bensalem, who is exploring the sociolinguistics of the workplace in Algeria; and Manel Boulahia, working on English in the linguistic landscape of Algiers.
Professor Blackwood was primary supervisor to Michelle Harrison (PhD 2013), who now holds a permanent post in the French Department at the University of Leicester; to Will Amos (PhD 2017), Assistant Professor in French & Translation Studies at the University of Warwick; and to Lucia Brandi (PhD 2018). In addition, he was a supervisor for Omar Almoush (PhD 2015) and Ghazi Al-Naimat (PhD 2015).