Mercator European Network of Language Diversity Centres
The Mercator Network of Language Diversity Centres receives three years funding (2009-2011) within the EU programme on ILLP, under the heading of Key activity 2 – Languages. The embraced topics are the use of media and information technology, legal provisions with respect to minority language learning, and developments in language teaching and learning.
The Network can contribute to the improvement of opportunities for language use by analysing and strengthening the language visibility, cultural, economic and social opportunities for language use. The envisaged function of the Network, is to be a platform for the exchange of research results, information, experiences and good practice in the field of language learning and linguistic diversity. Communication among policy-makers, language planning professionals and those involved in language teaching is meant to take place in form of face to face meetings at annual conferences and workshops, and by publications and online presence. A further aim is to be a reference point for these target groups as well as for academics and students likewise by providing accurate and reliable information, which can serve as a basis for policy development at all levels of government and administration.
As every policy needs public support to build on, the aim is also to inform the public at large about the benefits of linguistic diversity and multilingualism. All of the Network’s work can contribute to enhancing attitudes towards multi- and plurilingualism of both, minority and majority language speakers. This includes the spread of information on language-related policies of the European Commission. But above all it means to raise public awareness of language-related public issues amongst both speakers and non-speakers of minority and smaller state languages. The focal point is the role of language as an influential factor when it comes to social cohesion, economic prosperity and the meaning of regional uniqueness. In this an inclusive approach is sought, as not only regional and smaller state languages are comprised but also immigrant minorities or deaf minorities. In this mutual understanding and cooperation is sought to be promoted. Although academic research is emphasized, wider work of institutions responsible for language learning and language use, and the implementation of new teaching and policy models will be taken into account.
The Network aims at a maximum exchange of results, information, experience and good practice in the field of language learning and linguistic diversity.
It is meant to be a reference point for academics and students and shall serve as a basis for policy development at all levels of government and administration.
It is envisaged to raise public awareness of language related public issues amongst both, speakers and non-speakers of minority and smaller state languages and promote mutual understanding and cooperation.
The focus will be primarily on academic research, but the wider work of institutions responsible for learning for language learning in different EU languages and facilitating the implementation of new models will also be taken into account.
Communication among our target groups will be facilitated by both, means of face-to-face meeting on conferences and workshops, and means of publications and the network’s online presence.
Mercator International Conference
‘Media Convergence and Linguistic Diversity: How can the creative industries contribute to language vitality in a multiplatform environment?’
Centre for Finnish Studies at the Mälardalen University
Research Institute for Linguistics, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Last modified: 06.05.2010