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Canadian Language Industry Harmonizes Policy, Technology, and Partnerships
Posted by Nataly Kelly on November 26, 2008  in the following blogs: Translation and Localization
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What do you get when you bring together a country's Commissioner of Official Languages, translation and technology providers, and expert speakers under the auspices of a language industry association? A stand-out language industry event, that's what.

This was the combination of elements that combined to make the Canadian Language Industry Showcase a success. Held in bilingual Ottawa-Gatineau at the Hilton Lac-Leamy, the event was executed flawlessly by the Association de l'industrie de la langue (AILIA). What made this event stand out from the pack?
  • Language policy backdrop. The event kicked off with a keynote address from the Honourable Graham Fraser, the Canadian commissioner of official languages. Making sure that members of the industry understand the overarching policy context for which language services are required in Canada helps increase communication and understanding between language service providers (LSPs), government bodies, and members of the public.

  • Government participants. While individuals from government agencies often attend language industry events, there seemed to be a large percentage of individuals from provincial and city government at this event, as well as a good sampling of folks from the Canadian Translation Bureau, one of the largest translation organizations in the world.

  • Technology focus. Canadian language technology vendors were out in abundance, with the likes of Druide Informatique, JiveFusion, LogoSoft, Multicorpora, NLP Technologies, Nunasoft, and Terminotix. The Language Technologies Research Centre also exhibited at the event, and a panel session on interpretation discussed technologies for administering both interpretation services and interpreter certification tests.
What we appreciated most about the AILIA event was this year's theme, which highlighted "strengthening alliances in translation, language training, and language technologies." Given our longstanding plea for industry associations to adopt a partnership approach combined with our complaint that during most years, there is an overload of events in the language services space, this spotlight on alliances caught our attention -- in a good way, leaving us to end the fall conference season off on a positive note.


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