Friday, 28 September 2012

European Day of Languages

Yesterday, 26 September, the EU celebreated the European Day of Language. The importance of languages is recognised at political as well as practical level. The twitter of the Digital Agenda stated that "Language is key for the digital single market. 
Only 18 % of Internet users regularly buy on-line in another language than their native one"; or the tweet of Jochen Hummel, chairman of LT Innovate: "Vielsprachigkeit ist die grösste  Huerde der Digital Agenda; loesen wir sie, ist Europa fitter als jeder andere fuer den Weltmarkt" (Multilingualism is the biggest challenge of the Digital Agenda; when we are able to solve it, Europe will be more fit than anybody else for the global market). 

Visit our websites - CELAN and LT-Innovate to learn about how we can support your multilinguality.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

"Opening up Education": Let's shape the future of Europe's education

DG Education and Culture is currently working on a proposal for an initiative on "Opening up Education", which aim is to exploit the full potential of Open Education Resources and digital technologies for the modernisation of education and training systems, in order to supply the necessary skills for a knowledge-based economy, growth and jobs (EU2020). A public consultation is now online. We invite you to shape the future of Europe's education and answer the survey. It will be open until 13 November 2012.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Is Linguistic Diversity the next greater business challenge?

A recent study by The Economist "Competing across borders: how cultural and communication barriers affect business" reveals the importance of languages for businesses. Two-thirds of respondents say that differences in language and culture make it difficult to gain a foothold in unfamiliar markets.

Some 47% say their companies do not offer enough training to hone their employees’ language and communication skills, and 40% believe there is not enough emphasis placed on recruiting or selecting people who are suited to cross-cultural environments. Misunderstandings rooted in cultural differences present the greatest obstacle to productive cross-border collaboration

Interestingly, linguistic diversity – or the lack of it – is considered by some margin to be a greater business challenge in Latin America and southern Europe than elsewhere. For example, 38% of those surveyed in Brazil and 40% in Spain believe the difficulty in communicating in non-native languages to be a significant hindrance to effective cross-border relations.

More information about the full report (.pdf).