The LANGUAGES & BUSINESS Forum is part of the largest global conference on technology-supported learning and training for the corporate, education and public service sectors: ONLINE EDUCA BERLIN. In an environment which promotes international networking for all sectors, the forum is the place for language training professionals to discover innovative methods and absorb new thinking.

The international forum focuses on how multilingualism can be put into practice in both companies and training facilities. Core themes of the event are language training and management, as well as imparting technically-oriented language to practitioners of particular professions.

The LANGUAGES & BUSINESS Forum 2013 did away with all the old conference formats, focusing instead on provocation, group discussion and the presentation and sharing of ideas. Led by Timothy Phillips of SKYL IGHT GmbH and Ian McMaster of Business Spotlight, the full-day pre-conference event invited four “agents provocateurs” to the stage to address incisive topics in the world of languages in business and inspired the audience to draw their own conclusions and argue their own cases. Prof. Dr Helen Bicknell, for example, delivered a heartfelt invective against the businesses and business schools that “want languages, but don’t want to pay for them”, taking in along the way her own past in student activism. And Bob Dignen, speaking about intercultural communication, took the view that “culture is a sociolinguistic construct”, only having the meaning that we apply to it, and that therefore, “teaching intercultural communication is,” with a few exceptions, “useless”.

Stimulated by these lively speeches, the participants then divided into four groups to come up with their own response to present to the rest of the audience – an activity which had the effect of turning the day into not only a frank, honest and daring discussion of contemporary issues, but also a fine networking opportunity for those involved.

Stay connected and don’t miss out the next LANGUAGES & BUSINESS Forum on December 3, 2014. Make sure to like our facebook group or visit our news portal to keep up to date on the progress of LANGUAGES & BUSINESS!

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