IV International Conference Translating Voices, Translating Regions
The Mediating Emergencies Group of the Centre for Intercultural Mediation, with the support of the Institute of Advanced Studies, Durham University and under the egis of the Institute of Advanced Computing Research, Durham University is pleased to announce the IV International conference Translating Voices, Translating Regions.
The fourth International conference aims to address questions around the role of interpreters and translators as mediators in situations of sudden or continued emergency. After a landslide, a tsunami, an earthquake and other natural disasters, the arrival of humanitarian organizations, NGOs, and individuals from around the world has become a demonstration of international solidarity. Medical operation and rescue operations takes precedence, then reconstruction and collaboration with the local authorities to understand the large mass of data on the causes, effects, and consequences of the event begin. Yet, project managing rescue operations, tasks forces, and their immediate follow-up activities in situations of danger and disaster and coordinating groups of rescuers and local people with different nationalities, emergency procedures, languages, and social behaviour remain problems of mediation.
Who are the individuals who act as either language (including Sign Languages) or culture interpreters (or translators of documentation relating to the rescue missions) during rescue operations and for emergencies? How are they trained? Undeniably some common languages, or lingua franca, such as Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, French, and English to name a few would often be shared among rescue teams. Multi-ethnic backgrounds, regions of minority languages, and contexts of conflict do amplify the communication problems between international rescuing missions and local populations. Organization of the data – medical records, legal claims, documentations, and so on – is also a technological issue especially for translators whose work will follow the immediate response to the emergency and will initiate all the following process of collaboration and coordination, which naturally require legal evidence and documentation.
Key themes of the conference
- What happens to medical translation and public service interpreting in such circumstances?
- Which interpreting and translating systems are different international organizations using?
- Who is researching technologies to support in these events?
- Who is training interpreters and translators to actively support rescue teams and NGOs in these circumstances?
- What type of data needs immediate handling in interpreting emergencies?
- What technological support do interpreters and translator need?
- Can we model or simulate contingency plans that aid those who have to provide interlingual communication?