International events launch Legal Translation hub at the School of Advanced Study

An array of activities in the next few days will launch the Legal Translation hub – a cross-institute initiative by the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS) in collaboration with the Institute of Modern Languages Research at the School of Advanced Study.

The hub will host regular events such as seminars and discussion panels, and an annual Legal Translation Day. A unique LLM in Legal Translation is launching in October 2017, and a dedicated library section has been established within the IALS library.

The hub engages with practice – both legal translators and lawyers – and with professional bodies and institutions. Additionally, it undertakes outreach projects.

The inaugural events include three talks at the Russell Square headquarters of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies on 3 February:

  • Machine translation and national security (3 February, 2–3 pm): Dr Henry Liu, president of the International Federation of Translators, based in New Zealand and a leading interpreter in English, Chinese and French, will discuss issues that have implications for UK’s international reputation and domestic security. He believes British citizens are being placed at unnecessary risk by a lack of accountability and absence of quality control in intelligence gathering operations.
  • A practical workshop: using Corpus Linguistics for Law (3 February, 3.30–5.30pm): Dr Gianluca Pontrandolfo, a Trieste-based practising legal translator and academic, will use examples to explain how new technologies can be used to gain insights into the language of legal texts. Dr Pontrandolfo worked on the English translation of The Italian Code of Criminal Procedure and is also the author of a groundbreaking work on compound terms in criminal law.
  • EU legal translation: past, present and future? (3 February, 5.30–7.30pm): Professor Łucja Biel, from the Institute of Applied Linguistics, University of Warsaw, Poland and leader of several international language projects will provide a practically oriented overview of major challenges and quality parameters in institutional legal translation in EU institutions.

The launch programme concludes on 6 February at the Québec Government Office, 12.30–2.30pm, with Louis Beaudoin, an eminent jurilinguist from Canada, who will explain Québec’s unique ‘co-drafting’ model to an international audience of legal translation practitioners, representatives of leading law firms based in London, researchers and members of the public.

Dr Juliette Scott, who is in charge of the hub’s activities, said:

We are extremely lucky to welcome these four international experts. Everyone here is very excited about raising awareness both nationally and globally of the little known and highly skilled profession of legal translation

School of Advanced Study Press release 30 January 2017