Communication in the multilingual city

Origen: Communication in the multilingual city

8th and 9th March 2018, Birmingham, UK

TLANG is delighted to invite proposals for its final two day international conference to be held in Birmingham, UK. The final venue will be announced shortly. The conference fee is £150. British Sign Language and International Sign interpretation will be organised for all main sessions and at least one of the parallel sessions. The names of the interpreters will be announced shortly.

This international cross disciplinary conference is focused on the theme of communication in the city. We will create conversations which transcend disciplinary boundaries, and assist in thinking creatively about communication in metropolitan settings. We aim to promote discussion of research findings and methodologies between a range of stakeholders including academics, professionals, policy-makers, and practitioners.

We welcome proposals for individual papers and colloquia related to the following themes:

1. Mobility

Papers in this theme will consider the dynamics and complexity of communication in superdiverse societies where people from an increased number of territories come into contact, and where people have access to an increased range of resources for communication. Papers considering implications for communication of movement from and to cities are welcome.

2. Change

In this theme papers will explore communication in changing cities. Papers will engage with changing city landscapes, changing demographics, and changing modes of communication. Papers may refer to the implications of change for communication in institutional contexts, including education, law, and business, and in non-institutional, informal contexts.

3. Interpretation

This theme addresses communicative exchanges which include, or refer to, any aspect of interpretation and translation, broadly conceived. Examples of such exchanges may include asylum interviews, sign language interpretation, and text translation. We also welcome papers which consider miscommunication, and papers which refer to cultural translation.

4. Encounters

This theme explores communication in encounters between people in the city. These may include, for example, service encounters in markets, interactions in welfare benefits settings, and exchanges in contexts of teaching and learning. We welcome papers which refer to encounters which include translanguaging, multilingualism, multimodality and complex semiotic repertoires.

5. Creativity

This theme contemplates creativity across a broad range of formal and non-formal communicative arenas. We welcome papers which take creativity as a starting point to explore communicative competence in everyday contexts of linguistic and social diversity.

6. Networks

This theme takes networks as its focus. Papers may consider notions of community, place, and neighbourhood, in discussions of communication in local, national, and global networks. We are interested in studies of digital communication, and welcome papers which refer to social media and other online networks.


Jan Blommaert
Jan Blommaert
(Tilburg University)
Ana DeumertAna Deumert (University of Cape Town)
Annelies Kusters

Annelies Kusters (Heriot-Watt University)

Tong-King LeeTong-King Lee (University of Hong Kong)
Betsy RymesBetsy Rymes (University of Pennsylvania)



Proposals are invited for individual papers, colloquia, posters, and roundtable discussions. The deadline for proposal submission is midnight on 22nd September 2017.  Decisions on successful applications will be announced in mid-November.

Download the conference details (PDF)

Details of registration and the link to abstract submission will be announced shortly.