Jeannette Littlemore

Colleges, School and Institutes

Research interests

My research interests lie in the area of figurative language and thought. I am currently working on the relationship between emotion, empathy, metaphor and creativity.

Research groups

External research grants and awards received

  • Dates: Sep 2016 - Sep 2018
    Title of Project: 
    Death before Birth: Understanding, informing and supporting the choices made by people who have experienced miscarriage, termination, and stillbirth (Project Reference: ES/N008359/1)
    Funding Body: 
    My role: 
  • Dates: Oct 2015 - Oct 2017
    Title of Project: Exploring Multimodal Metaphor in Advertising (Project Reference: 659078)
    Funding Body: European Union (Marie Curie Fellowship Scheme)
    Amount: €183,455
    My role: Principal-Investigator (Research Fellow: Dr Paula Sobrino-Perez)
  • Dates: Jan 2012-Dec 2014
    Title of Project: Metaphor use in one-to-one academic consultations in English: Implications for Spanish student mobility in Europe (FFI2011-22809)
    Funding Body: Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness
    Amount: €50,820
    My role: Co-Investigator
  • Dates: May 2014 - Apr 2016
    Title of Project: Metaphor: From Embodied Cognition to Discourse
    Funding Body: Thyssen Foundation (Germany)
    Amount: €10,000
    My role: Co-Investigator
  • Dates: Oct 2014-Sep 2017
    Title of Project: Cognitive modeling and meaning construction across languages: Theory, implications, and applications (FFI2013-43593-P)
    Funding Body: Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness
    Amount: €73,000
    My role: Co-Investigator
  • Dates: Aug 2010-Jul 2011
    Title of Project: Verbal and gestural metaphor in cross-cultural communication
    Funding Body: The British Council
    Amount: £2,820
    My role: Principal Investigator
  • Dates: Apr 2010-Mar 2011
    Title of Project: Investigating figurative proficiency at different levels of second language writing
    Funding Body: Cambridge ESOL
    Amount: £5,000
    My role: Principal Investigator
  • Dates: Jan-Dec 2006
    Title of Project: The Development of Creativity in Japanese Learners of English
    Funding Body: Japanese DAIWA Foundation
    Amount: £1,200
    My role: Principal Investigator
  • Dates: Aug 2000 - Feb 2003
    Title of Project: New Technologies and Language Learning: Pedagogical Approaches and Practical Applications (Project Number: 56563-CP-1-98-1-IE-LINGUA-LA)
    Funding Body: The European Union
    Amount: €146,000
    My role: Co-Investigator
  • Dates: Jan 1997 - Jul 1999
    Title of Project: European Language Council Thematic Network Project in the area of Languages: (Project 25917-CP-2-97-1-DE-ERASMUS-ETN)
    Funding Body: The European Union
    Amount: €6,030,000
    My role: Co-Investigator


I have been working at the University of Birmingham since 1999. Before that, I taught and lectured in Spain, Japan and Belgium.

Willingness to take PhD students


PhD projects

I have a lively group of PhD students working on metaphor, metonymy and second language learning. I am interested in supervising MA and PhD research in the areas of:

Teaching and learning figurative language
Language learning and cognitive linguistics
Analyzing figurative language