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Picture of Lam, Phoenix (Dr)
Lam, Phoenix (Dr)
Assistant Professor

PhD, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
BA, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Room No.FG332
Tel3400 2055
EmailThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Find Phoenix Lam at ResearcherID

Research Overview

I am interested in exploring the interaction between language and other semiotic modes in online spaces and also in the physical landscapes. The key focus of my current research is twofold: One is on digital tourism discourse, in particular, in user-generated posts on travel forums; and the other is on the use of signs in public spaces in the urban environment. One main academic goal of my research is to understand and theorize the relationship between a place and the communities interacting with it, both physically and virtually, through the study of the associated discursive practices. Practically, my research aims to inform industry practitioners, policymakers and relevant stakeholders of the physical and virtual discursive construction, representation and perception of a place, which will in turn help to make a place more accessible, livable, and sustainable.

My current project investigates the top questions asked by TripAdvisor users about Hong Kong following a corpus-based approach.

Teaching Areas

Corpus linguistics
Discourse analysis
English grammar
Forensic linguistics
Language and advertising
Language and education

Research Interests

Applied linguistics
Computer-mediated communication
Corpus linguistics
(Multimodal) discourse analysis
Professional communication

Research Output

Journal Articles

Cheng, W., Lam, P. & Kong, K. C. C. (2019). Learning English through workplace communication: Linguistic devices for interpersonal meaning in textbooks in Hong Kong. English for Specific Purposes, 55, 28-39. (SSCI)

Kong, K. C. C., Lam, P. & Cheng, W. (2019). Corpus-based empirical approach to professionalism: identifying interactional roles and dispositions in professional codes of ethics. Journal of Applied Linguistics and Professional Practice, 14(1), 3-28.

Lam, P. (2018). The discursive construction and realization of the Hong Kong brand: a corpus-informed study. Text & Talk, 38(2), 191-216. (AHCI & SSCI)

Lam, P. & Graddol, D. (2017). Conceptualising the vertical landscape: The case of the International Finance Centre in the world’s most vertical city. Journal of Sociolinguistics, 21(4), 521-546. (SSCI)

Forsyth, R. & Lam, P. (2014). Found in translation: to what extent is authorial discriminability preserved by translators? Literary & Linguistic Computing, 29(2), 199-217. (SSCI)

Lam, P., Cheng, W. & Kong, K. C. C. (2014). Learning English through workplace communication: An evaluation of existing resources in Hong Kong. English for Specific Purposes, 34, 68-78. (SSCI)

Lam, P. (2014). Professional e-mail communication in higher education in Hong Kong: A case study. Text & Talk, 34(2), 143-164. (AHCI & SSCI)

Lam, P. (2013). Interdiscursivity, hypertextuality, multimodality: A corpus-based multimodal move analysis of Internet group buying deals. Journal of Pragmatics, 51, 13-39. (AHCI & SSCI)

Cheng, W. & Lam, P. (2013). Western perceptions of Hong Kong ten years on: A corpus-based critical discourse study. Applied Linguistics, 34(2), 173-190. (SSCI)

Lam, P. (2010). Toward a functional framework for discourse particles: A comparison of well and so. Text & Talk, 30(6), 657-677. (AHCI & SSCI)

Cheng, W. & Lam, P. (2010). Media discourses in Hong Kong: Change in representation of human rights. Text & Talk, 30(5), 507-527. (AHCI & SSCI)

Lam, P. (2010). Discourse particles in corpus data and textbooks: The case of well. Applied Linguistics, 31(2), 260-281. (SSCI)

Lam, P. (2009). The making of a BNC customised spoken corpus for comparative purposes. Corpora, 4(2), 167-88.

Lam, P. (2009). The effect of text type on the use of so as a discourse particle. Discourse Studies, 11(3), 353-372. (SSCI)

Forsyth, R., Clarke, D. & Lam, P. (2008). Timelines, talk and transcription: A chronometric approach to simultaneous speech. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, 13(2), 225-250. (AHCI & SSCI)

Lam, P. (2006). Well but that’s the effect of it: The use of well as a discourse particle in talk shows. Sprache und Datenverarbeitung (International Journal for Language Data Processing), 30(1), 99-108.

Book Chapters

Lam, P. (2016). Academic email requests: A pragmalinguistic and sociopragmatic comparison between faculty and students. In Bianchi, F. & Gesuato, S. (eds.) Pragmatic issues in specialized communicative contexts (pp. 127-146). Leiden; Boston: Brill | Rodopi.

Cheng, W. & Lam, P. (2012). Prosody in discourse. In Gee, J. P. & Handford, M. (eds.) Routledge handbook of discourse analysis (pp. 271-284). London; New York: Routledge.

Lam, P. (2009). What a difference the prosody makes: The role of prosody in the study of discourse particles. In Barth-Weingarten, D., Dehé, N. & Wichmann, A. (eds.) Where prosody meets pragmatics (pp. 107-126). Bingley: Emerald.

Other Outputs

Lam, P. (2015). Review of Stanca Măda and Răzvan Săftoiu (eds.) Professional Communication across Languages and Cultures. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2012, vi + 284 pp. Pragmatics and Society, 6(1) 147-151. (AHCI & SSCI)


Research Projects (funded projects – both internal and external)

Top questions asked by TripAdvisor users about Hong Kong: A Linguistic Approach (Internal)