This paper is motivated by an experience in collecting, analyzing, and then redeploying (sharing while making relevant to other corporate SIL functions) corporate intellectual assets. These assets are relevant to both products SIL products and services and corporate processes. This paper attempts to document some of the current challenges presented to the SIL staff person as well as present some items for consideration in overcoming these challenges. Continue reading →
The Ethnologue as an academic book, is somewhat of a straw man in linguistics. Many people who write grants for language documentation projects (generally on under described or endangered languages) will cite the Ethnologue and some other resources or lack of resources . These efforts seeking funding are usually an effort to get more language data. The rationale for this is two fold:
Because so little is known that we do not know if the Ethnologue is correct.
Because there is a conflict between other published sources and the Ethnologue .
About two or three weeks ago Gary Simons and Paul Lewis co-presented on an Extension to Fishman’s Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale (Lewis & Simons 2010) . Fishman’s scale for measuring Language Vitality and Language Endangerment has been around for about 2 decades (almost longer than me ;-)). The Ethnologue in its most recent version has started to list the position of the language on the EGIDS scale. This is something that the editors are looking to expand to all languages in the Ethnologue. This has some bearing on Language Documentation globally (as grant writers and funders look at EGIDS as a pivot point for language vitality) and because Language Documentation efforts usually (and typically) focus on languages on a 7 or higher on the scale (Shifting, Moribund, Nearly Extinct, etc). Continue reading →