The overall mission of the research programme that I propose is to gain a deep and precise understanding of the computational mechanisms underlying the emergence, evolution, acquisition and processing of human-like languages in populations of autonomous agents. Unravelling and computationally modelling these mechanisms will not only contribute to a better understanding of how human languages function, but will also allow us to equip truly intelligent autonomous agents with the necessary means to co-construct conceptual and linguistic structures that are adequate for interacting with humans and each other in their native environment. This research programme is fundamental, yet applicable in nature. While it investigates fun- damental questions about the origins, evolution, acquisition and processing of human communication and language, the results of the experiments are directly relevant to a variety of real-world applications that tackle important industrial and societal challenges. Examples of such applications include intelligent conversational agents, collaborative robots, human-centric opinion observatories and facilitators, intelligent tutoring systems, and adaptive self-organising multi-agent systems.