Research and innovation
- 1 minute
On 9 and 10 November 2023, the conference 'Multilingualism from scientific, educational, economic and political perspectives' took place in the Davos Congress Centre. The aim of the conference was to multiply existing knowledge, discover new perspectives and discuss the scholastic, educational and social relevance of multilingualism.
As part of the round-table discussion between representatives from politics, education, business and science, in response to moderator Claudio Spescha's (SRF) provocative question as to whether Romansh and Italian could still be afforded in Graubünden in the face of the shortage of qualified personnel, the State Councillor, Dr. Jon Domenic Parolini, emphasised the undisputed importance of these languages: "Despite the increasing predominance of English in our society, the three cantonal languages, German, Romansh and Italian, retain a high value in the working environment.
In one thing, the participants in the debate agreed: young people have easier access to the English language, as demonstrated by the steady increase in the average proficiency level in recent years. The demands of politics and society for efficient and effective foreign language teaching also pose considerable methodological challenges for research in universities. An observation that is reflected in the 2021-2024 strategy of the Chamber of Teacher Training Colleges, which states that rapid social change and the associated changes in teaching and learning, together with the increasing demands on educational professionals, call for intensified research and development.
The conference in Davos was organised by the Teacher Training Colleges of the cantons of Graubünden, Valais and Ticino on behalf of the Federal Office for Culture and in cooperation with the Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Education (EDK), the Chamber of Teacher Training Colleges (ASP) of swissuniversities, the working group on foreign languages of the Chamber of ASP and the Institute for Multilingualism.