Between 2001 and 2008 David Huenlich received training in linguistic typology at the University of Leipzig (Germany) with field work in Manang (Nepal) and Övörkhangai (Mongolia). In 2016, he completed a PhD in German Studies at the University of Texas at Austin (USA) while working for the Texas German Dialect Project. Ever since, his focus in linguistics is on migration-related language change and language acquisition.
At the Leibniz-Institute for the German Language (IDS), David coordinated a study of migrant language learning in state-run integration courses in 2016. He also documented the vocational training of recent refugees. Since 2019, he is pursuing a PhD in history at the University of Osnabrück, studying the occupational patterns in present-day German American communities. He continues as a part-time researcher at the IDS in the project "Deutsch in der Welt" (German in the World) where he analyses the historic role of German in America.