This corpus-based study shows that the presence and duration of schwa in Dutch word-initial syllables are affected by a word’s predictability and its morphological structure. Schwa is less reduced in words that are more predictable given the following word. In addition, schwa may be longer if the syllable forms a prefix, and in prefixes the duration of schwa is positively correlated with the frequency of the word relative to its stem. Our results suggest that the conditions which favor reduced realizations are more complex than one would expect on the basis of the current literature.
Bibliographic reference. Hanique, Iris / Schuppler, Barbara / Ernestus, Mirjam (2010): "Morphological and predictability effects on schwa reduction: the case of dutch word-initial syllables", In INTERSPEECH-2010, 933-936.