SOAS University of London

SOAS Student Enterprise

Website Launch set to Promote and Celebrate Language Diversity


Date: 24 March 2014Time: 6:00 PM

Finishes: 24 March 2014Time: 9:00 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: Brunei Suite

Type of Event: Launch Event

PhD students from SOAS, University of London, are set to launch Language Landscape a website which promotes multilingualism and lesser spoken languages by mapping audio and video recordings of languages on an interactive map. The event will be held at SOAS, in the popular Brunei Suite, from 18:00-21:00 on the 24th March.

Language Landscape is a not-for-profit company which promotes language diversity by representing where languages are actually spoken via an interactive web-based map. All registered users of the Language Landscape website can make contributions to the site by uploading audio recordings of languages and tagging them on the map at the place where the recording was made. Such a representation of languages helps to raise awareness of language diversity, and could affect the creation of policies regarding support for minority and endangered languages.

In addition to its online presence, the Language Landscape team also run outreach projects with schools and communities. Their most recent project involved working together with year 9 students from Bow School in East London, to increase awareness of the importance of languages, offering school children the opportunity to reconnect with the languages spoken by their parents or grandparents.  

Clare Roberts, a French teacher from Bow School, said: “By using the Language Landscape website as the central tool of our workshops, we helped the students to create their own projects and recordings, raising their awareness of the language diversity around them and the advantages of being multilingual. Language Landscape has been responsible for making my pupils proud of where they come from and who they are, which I think will be invaluable for them as they continue their education, facing all of the challenges which inner-city pupils face.”

The new version of the Language Landscape website has been developed with the kind support of Google Earth Outreach, the SOAS Alumni Fund, and the UnLtd and HEFCE HEI Initiative/SOAS Student Enterprise Fund which supports student-led social enterprise. The event is public and all are very welcome!

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