MULTILINGUALISM: EMPOWERING INDIVIDUALS, TRANSFORMING SOCIETIES

MEITS is a major interdisciplinary research project funded under the AHRC Open World Research Initiative. Linguistic competence in more than one language – being multilingual – sits at the heart of the study of modern languages and literatures, distinguishing it from cognate disciplines. Through six interlocking research strands we investigate how the insights gained from stepping outside a single language, culture and mode of thought are vital to individuals and societies.


Recent News

Language tasters

MEITS is delighted to announce its new series of language taster classes!

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Policy Briefing on Languages, Business, Trade and Innovation

We are delighted to announce the publication of a new Policy Briefing on Languages, Business, Trade and Innovation, co-authored by Wendy Ayres-Bennett (PI MEITS) and Janice Carruthers (AHRC Leadership Fellow in Modern Languages), and funded by the two AHRC major research projects.

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Policy Journal

Languages, Society & Policy: Mission

LSP publishes high-quality peer-reviewed language research in accessible and non-technical language to promote policy engagement and provide expertise to policy makers, journalists and stakeholders in education, health, business and elsewhere. 

Language underpins every aspect of human activity, social, economic and cultural. Insights from language and linguistics research can improve policy making and have the potential to impact on a wide range of areas of public life. 

We publish Policy Papers, Opinion Articles,  short and accessible papers from the Research Lab and Dialogues. We also occasionally publish policy reviews.

LSP promotes the multidisciplinarity of linguistics and language research and welcomes contributions from diverse disciplines including, but not restricted to, linguistics, modern languages, cultural studies, cognitive science, developmental linguistics and psychology, sociolinguistics, corpus and computational linguistics, education, health sciences, psychology and neuroscience. For information on how to submit a paper, please see our Editorial Guidelines.

ISSN 2515-3854

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Recent Blog

“Speak in English!”: Inventing ‘everyday’ language policies

When we think about language policies we tend to think big. We might think of national mandates which determine the official language(s) of a country, or policies for education which specify the medium of instruction in state schools. While such policies will undoubtedly influence our experience of living, working or studying in a particular country, the language practices that each individual chooses to follow (or perhaps more controversially, chooses to impose on others) reflect much deeper ideologies. Recently I have come across several examples that have made me reflect on these ‘everyday language policies’ and particularly on what they might represent. Here are a few examples…

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Benefits or connections? Are we communicating the right message?

A few weeks ago, I was involved in writing a case study which forms part of a booklet for the MEITS project addressing some big issues in language learning. The theme that I was responsible for was ‘why do people learn languages?’. This is a question often asked by the general public and in policy making; it is also a very difficult one as the motivations for language learning are many, and very complex. I was hoping to find some straightforward answers in our research, but was struggling to distil a common message across the project, as our strands do not seem to directly address the question of motivation but tend to focus on a related issue on ‘the benefits of language learning’. As the title of the MEITS project indicates, the key message is that Multilingualism can Empower Individuals and Transform Societies and there are multiple benefits of language learning, be they social, cultural, cognitive, educational, economic or even health-related.

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Radio connects Irish speakers

Due to Covid-19 lockdown, I have been working from home for some time along with our youngest son and daughter. So far, the arrangement is going well, although things can get a bit tetchy as cocktail hour approaches on Fridays!

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Watch / Listen

The Pop-Up World of Languages in numbers

Visitors (Oct-Dec 2019)

Languages recorded

Top 10 languages amongst our visitors

  • Spanish
  • French
  • Chinese
  • Bengali
  • Irish
  • Portuguese
  • Arabic
  • Hindi
  • Japanese
  • Russian

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