Language and the SDGs, 21-22 April 2016

Having previously noted the CFP for the Language and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) symposium to be held in New York on 21-22 April 2016, this is a quick reminder that registration for the event is still open.

For reference the provisional program is copied below (NB- the keynote speaker, Suzanne Romaine, was not on that version when checked on 4/12). Hyperlinks added; any errors are mine and not the fault of the seminar organizers.


Thursday-Friday, April 21-22, 2016

Church Center for the United Nations, 777 United Nations Plaza, New York

Sponsored by:


Thursday, April 21

8:30-9:15. Registration and coffee


Humphrey Tonkin (University of Hartford, USA).  Language: The missing dimension

Timothy Reagan (University of Maine, USA).  Language rights and the SDGs

Kurt Müller (National Defense University, USA).  Organization, targeting, and assumptions in foreign assistance

Lisa J. McEntee-Atalianis (Birkbeck, University of London, UK).  The forgotten goal – Goal 18: Building sustainable knowledge societies by addressing linguistic and digital divides through global partnerships.

10:50-11:00. BREAK

11:00-12:30. SUSTAINABILITY Chair, Kurt Müller.

Katalin Buzasi (University of Amsterdam, Netherlands). Languages and the sustainable development goals – What do we know and how to go on?

Carla Bagna & Andrea Scibetta (Università per Stranieri, Siena, Italy). Language as a factor in sustainable development: Language to reduce inequalities

Laurence Jay-Rayon & Amy R. Tuininga (Montclair State University, USA). Sustainability is a conversation

Alicia Fuentes Calle (LINGUAPAX International). Pax Linguistica and the preservation of linguistic diversity revisited.

12:30-1:10. LUNCH

1:10-1:40. Language, literacy, employability and income in the US Sarah Catherine K. Moore (CAL: Center for Applied Linguistics), Molly Fee (University of California Los Angeles), Terrence G. Wiley (CAL), and M. Beatriz Arias (CAL).

1:40-2:50. LITERACY Chair, Terrence Wiley.

John Comings (World Education). Mother tongue reading instruction: Language and mother tongue education (Goal 4)

Carol Deshano da Silva (Save the Children). The successes and challenges of Save the Children US in planning and implementing reading and writing programs in linguistically diverse contexts

Alison Pflepsen (RTI International). Improving educational quality through improved literacy instruction.

2:50-3:00 BREAK

3:00-3:50. EDUCATION 1. Chair, Timothy Reagan.

Theo Du Plessis & Colleen Du Plessis (University of the Free State, South Africa). Realising inclusive and equitable quality education in South Africa: Contributions and obstacles in language in education.

Shereen Bhalla (Center for Applied Linguistics). Examining language and the role of mother-tongue education through the three-language formula of India.

3:50-5:00. LANGUAGE AND INCLUSION (Goals 4 and 10) Chair, João Pedro Marinotti (City University of New York, Graduate Center, USA)

Antonio Bardawil (New York University, USA), Leveling linguistic playing fields to reduce inequalities: How language factors into Goal 10

Cassondra Puls and Mackenzie Lawrence (International Rescue Committee), Balancing social inclusion and educational inclusion among displaced learners: The work of the International Rescue Committee

Kathleen McGovern (University of Massachusetts, USA), Dialogic practice in the language classroom: Valuing learners’ voices as a means of working towards the SDGs

Jennifer C. Hamano, Christen N. Madsen II, and Gita Martohardjono (Second Language Acquisition Lab, CUNY Graduate Center, USA): Language assessment for sustainable development

Friday, April 22

8:30-9:00. Registration and coffee

9:00. Opening comments


10:45-10:55. BREAK

10:55-11:25. Rosemary Salomone (St. John’s University, USA). Educational equity, SDG’s & commodification of English

11:25-12:35. CORE ISSUES. Chair, Rosemary Salomone.

Dragana Radosavljevic (University of Greenwich, UK). Interpreting and translation in international criminal law

Aneta Pavlenko (Temple University, USA). You have the right to remain silent, do you understand?

Alison Phipps (University of Glasgow, UK). Languages under duress.

12:35-1:15 LUNCH 

1:15-1:45. Carolyn Benson (Teachers College, Columbia University, USA). Documenting international progress in addressing language issues in education

1:45-2:55. EDUCATION 2. Chair, Carolyn Benson.

Francis M. Hult (Lund University, Sweden), Christine Glanz (UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning), and Ulrike Hanemann (UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning). Multilingual literacy and the SDG for quality education

Mark E. Karan & Elke Karan (SIL International). The use of non-dominant languages In primary education: The key to maximizing learning outcomes for learners who speak these languages

Marguerite Lukes (International Network for Public Schools). Language acquisition & immigrant young adults with interrupted schooling.

2:55-3:05 BREAK

3:05-4:15. THE ROLE OF THE UNITED NATIONS. Chair, Humphrey Tonkin.

– María Barros & Ana García Álvarez (Spanish Translation Service, United Nations, New York). Translation of SDGs: A tool for their implementation?

– Muhammed Raeez (Jawaharlal Nehru University, India). Arabic at the United Nations

Kathleen Stein-Smith (American Association of Teachers of French). The role of multilingualism in the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN Academic Impact).

4:15-4:25. Concluding comments by Sean O Riain (Ireland), Language and the SDGs: An Irish-language perspective.

4:25-5:00 Wrap-up and Close


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