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2008 Is Going To Be The Year Of International Languages

By Angelique van Engelen     Dec 13, 2007 in World
Next year is going to be the 'International Year Of Languages', as proclaimed by the UN. The international body hopes to promote 'unity in diversity' as well as global understanding.
In its first decision to put their money where their mouth is, the UN has said it will give all language services, six in total absolute equality on the workfloor. The organization's website will reflect this. Goal is to make the disparity between the use of English compared to the other five official languages disappear completely. UN staff converses in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
To give you a sneak preview of the sort of spirit the UN likely hopes to inspire, check out these comments from professionals in the (technological) terminology profession who went to a Summer School on Diversity last summer:
Diversity is political.
We are all diverse and there is no such a thing as a “homogeneous diverse group” and this is why we have to stop thinking in differences – even if this may be easier to do and even if many people think it is more comfortable to think in binary oppositions we have to try to change that.
1) Access to a new area: SIGN LANGUAGE; 2) Meeting people from different countries; 3) special know-how in DIVERSITY MANAGEMENT
Diversity does not mean blindness to differences, but treasures these differences and wants to ensure that no disadvantages are attached to them.
Diversity and Diversity Management will become more and more important topics in work situation, daily life, administration and education. When we learn to become good diversity managers we will be able to live to our highest potential and help others to do so.
A drop in the ocean of European pressing needs.
Diversity Management ist keine (weitere) Möglichkeit, sondern eine Notwendigkeit.
[Diversity Management is not an (additional) opportunity, it is necessary.]
This week I spent five very intensive days in the summer school and could not only gain important knowledge about the topic, but also enrich my personality so that from now on I will carry out all these positive experiences into professional as well as private life.
The best part for me was networking with other people on an international level, the worst part for me were people who did not use gender-sensitive language or showed up for their key note speech 30 minutes late without a single word of apology for the 25 people waiting. All in all – try to bring up the level!
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