Conference: 5th Mercator International Symposium: Linguistic Rights

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Tue Oct 10 13:45:29 UTC 2006

5th Mercator International Symposium: Linguistic Rights as a Social
Inclusion Factor

Date: 19-Oct-2006 - 21-Oct-2006
Location: Barcelona (Catalonia), Spain
Contact: Oriol Ampuero
Meeting URL:

V Mercator Internacional Symposium on Minority Languages

Linguistic Rights as a Social Inclusion Factor
19 - 21 October 2006
Institut d'Estudis Catalans (IEC), Barcelona
Organizer: Mercator-Legislation, CIEMEN (Barcelona, Catalonia)


Overview Europe has always been a multilingual land. This fact has been
accentuated in recent decades by the steady arrival and settlement on the
continent by non-Europeans who have brought their languages with them. The
current linguistic reality in Europe is, therefore, richer and more
complex than ever. The European Union -a political, economic and cultural
work in progress which has as one of its goals to put into practice the
democratic principle of uniting Europeans in respect for diversity- lives
fully immersed in this reality. In the process of its construction, the
European Union has to address issues as important as those related to
immigration and the social inclusion of immigrants from other continents,
who represent in many areas a significant percentage of the total

The languages spoken in the European Union today -those traditionally
considered European and those brought with immigration- are one of the
keys to making possible such 'union in diversity' of all citizens, groups,
communities, and peoples that live together in Europe. To encourage such
harmony, we must ask ourselves which kind of multilingualism should the
European Union put into practice now and in the future. At the same time,
it raises the question of how the linguistic rights of immigrants and of
receiving communities can be regulated and guaranteed and, more
specifically, how the exercise of these rights could stimulate the social
inclusion of newcomers who settle among minoritized linguistic communities
that share their space with majority or dominant languages.

Symposium The V Mercator International Symposium will critically analyse
the issues under consideration, taking as an indispensable departure point
the respect for the rights of everyone, and will emphasize the role of
language as a factor of inclusion in European Union societies with
minoritized languages.  The Symposium will also present a series of
practice cases for balancing individual rights and the collective rights
of speakers of both the languages of immigration and the minoritized
languages within the European Union. Moreover, it intends to gather
proposals that encourage the social cohesion of the receiving communities
while consolidating, at the same time, non-discriminatory linguistic
diversity. In such proposals, emphasis will be placed on the legislative
aspects that may contribute to the advancement of linguistic rights.

Thursday, 19 (AFTERNOON)

2:30 pm
Registration & accreditation


3:30 pm
Aureli Argem, President of CIEMEN & Director of Mercator Linguistic Rights
and Legislation

Representative of the Government of Catalonia

Jacques Delmoly, Head of Unit, Multilingualism Policy, Directorate General
for Education and Culture, European Commission

4:15 pm
Coffee Break

Opening Session

4:30 pm
Immigrants, National Minorities, and Language Rights: Towards an
Acceptable Normative Theory
Alan Patten, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA
Chaired by: Isidor Mar, Open University of Catalonia (UOC)

5:15 pm
Question time

5:30 pm
A European Approach. Language, Nation, Immigration and Citizenship:
Processes of Change, Political Innovation and Social Inclusion
Ricard Zapata, Pompeu Fabra University, Catalonia
Chaired by: Xavier Aragall, European Institute of the Mediterranean

6:00 pm
Question time

6:15 pm
Linguistic Policy in the EU: Discourses of Inclusion/Exclusion
Mirad Nic Craith University of Ulster, Northen Ireland
Chaired by: Agust Colomines, LINGUAPAX

6:45-7:00 pm
Question time


Chaired by: Bernat Joan i Mar, Member of the European Parliament for
Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya, Greens/ EFA Group

9:00 am
Can Laws Change Realities? Some Thoughts on the Basis of the Experience
Under the Framework Convention on National Minorities
Sia Spiliopoulou kermark, Uppsala University

9:30 am
Question time

9:45 am
Case Study I:
The European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages as a Instrument
for Social Cohesion: The Case of Immigration in Catalonia
Santi J. Castell, Rovira Virgili University, Catalonia

10:00 am
Case Study II:
Immigration and Language Diversity: New Challenges for Human Rights
Eduardo J. Ruiz Vieytez, Pedro Arrupe Institut of Human Rights, Deusto
University de Deusto, Basque Country

10:15 am
Question time

10:30 am


Chaired by: Durk Gorter, Mercator Education, Friesland

11:00 am
Social Cohesion and Linguistic Rights: National Minority Languages,
Immigration Languages and State Languages
Kutlay Yagmur and Guus Extra, Tilburg University, Netherlands

12:00 am
Question time

12:15 am
Case study I:
The Multilingual Cities Project - Gteborg, Sweden, one of six EU cities
Lilian Nygren, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

12:30 am
Case study II:
The Normalisation of Basque in a Diverse Context. Educational Guide of the
Sakana Region. The immersion in Basque, the Best Option
Mikel Galartza, member of the Basque Language Board in the County Council
of Sakana, Navarre

12:45 pm
Question time

13:00-15:00 pm


Chaired by: Carles Bertran, Center Association for the Orientation,
Training and Insertion for Foreign Workers (CITE - CONC), Catalonia

3.00 pm
The value of non-dominant languages
Franois Grin, University of Geneva, Switzerland

3:30 pm
Question time

3:45 pm
Case Study I:
Linguistic Rights of the Romany in Slovakia as a Constitutional and Policy
Michal Vaecka, Masaryk University, Czech Republic

4:00 pm
Case study II:
Minority Language and Integration Issues in Latvia and The Baltic States
Andrejs Veisbergs, University of Latvia, Latvia

4:15 pm
Question time

4:30 pm


Chaired by: Elin Haf, Mercator Media, Wales

5:00 pm
Models of Social and Linguistic Cohesion Through Cultural and Leisure
Steve Morris, University of Wales, Swansea, Wales

5:30 pm
Question time

5:45 pm
Case study I:
Language Learning and Integration Activities. An Example of Linguistic
Jordi Font Anton, Consortium for the Language Normalisation (CpNL),

6:00 pm
Case study II:
''Quedem?'' Leisure, Language and Social Cohesion in Catalonia
Eunice Romero, mnium Cultural, Catalonia

6:15 pm
Case study III:
Radio Svobodni, Free Radio Agora as a Bridge Between Cultures
Angelika Hdl, Radio Agora, Carinthia

6:30-6:45 pm
Question time


Chaired by: Carme Oller, General Directorate of Planning and Evaluation,
Department of Health of the Generalitat of Catalonia

9:00 am
Language Barriers and Acces Difficulties in the Health Services
Tona Lizana, Action Plan on Immigration, General Directorate of Planning
and Evaluation, Department of Health of the Generalitat of Catalonia

9:30 am
Question time

9:45 am
Case Study I:
Health, Newcomers and Language Barriers
Sid Ahmed Baba, Association Health and Family, Barcelona, Catalonia
Tai Mooi Ho Wong, Nephrology Service, Hospital del Mar, Barcelona,

10:05 am
Case Study II:
Health Care in the Own Language
Jacob Als Thomsen, Copenhagen University, Denmark

10:20 am
Question time

10:35 am


11:00 am
Summary & Conclusions
Chaired by: Maite Puigdevall, Co-ordinator of Mercator Linguistic Rights
and Legislation
Rapporteur: Colin H. Williams. Cardiff University, Wales

12:30 pm
Farewell Speeches
Aureli Argem, President of CIEMEN & Director of Mercator Linguistic Rights
and Legislation, Catalonia
Antoni Mir, Director of Linguamn - House of Languages, Catalonia

13:00 pm
End of Symposium


Attendance at the Symposium is free of charge. If you wish to register,
fill up the registration form (Catalan, English, Spanish).

Information on Hotels in Barcelona: In this document (Word format) you
will information on hotels in Barcelona and other useful web links.


Escarre International Centre For Ethnic Minorities and Nations (CIEMEN) -
Mercator Programme
With the sponsoring of: The European Commission and Linguamn - The House
of Languages

Symposium's Venue
Prat de la Riba's Room
Institut d'Estudis Catalans
C/ del Carme, 47
08001 - Barcelona


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