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Promotion of language diversity

To make the benefits of multilingualism for people and businesses more visible, that it the main aim of the campaign “Language Diversity”. This project is funded by the European Commission within the framework of the EU Programme Lifelong Learning.

In Flensburg the external evaluation of FUEN, Prof Dr Peter J. Weber and project manager Judith Walde had a meeting for the periodic evaluation together with FUEN head of office Susann Schenk.

Weber, who has been rector of the SRH University of Applied Sciences for Economics and Media in Calw since October 2012 and who is one of the authors of the EUROMOSAIC study, has been advising the activities of FUEN in regard to multilingualism and linguistic diversity that take place under the title of RML2future, since 2009.

In Europe, more than 90 languages are being spoken, and more of 35 of these are languages without a state of their own. According to the EUROMOSAIC-study commissioned by the EU, all languages with less than 300,000 speakers are critically endangered. If this is correct, most regional and minority languages in Europe are in severe danger in comparison with the national languages, whereas the national languages are again threatened by global languages such as English or Chinese.

“We want to implement the idea of our RML2future-network: to establish a centre of expertise for linguistic diversity. Throughout Europe there is a large demand, especially among the smaller and smallest languages. We need more visibility and awareness for linguistic diversity as a valuable resource – that is what we focus on in our current campaign”, says Judith Walde, the project manager.

Referring to the wide appeal of the EUROPEADA 2012, Weber pointed to the necessity to use several ways of communication – social media, promotion, lobbying and traditional means of advertising.

“Minorities have to adept professionally to the requirements of “glocalised” communication. We have reason to be excited and see how the young team of Language Diversity will further develop their ideas for language promotion.”

Weber also used the opportunity to get informed about other major projects of FUEN, such as the project “Solidarity with the Roma”, the Minority Citizens’ Initiative and the plans for a House of the Minorities.

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Judith Walde, FUEN project manager, Prof Dr Peter Weber, external evaluator, Susann Schenk, FUEN head of office and Jan Diedrichsen, FUEN director