According to Eurobarometer, 83% of Europeans value knowing other languages yet 44% cannot hold a conversation in another language. With globalisation and increasing migration, multilingualism is critical to intercultural understanding and cohesion in society, job prospects for individuals and competitiveness in Europe.
What is Language Rich Europe?
Language Rich Europe (LRE) is a study on multi-lingualism that was commissioned by the British Council and the Babylon Centre at Tilburg University in the Netherlands, with financial support from the European Commission.
LRE was a networking project bringing together 1200 policy makers and practitioners from 24 countries and regions in Europe to discuss and develop better policies and practices for multilingualism. Network members were drawn from the fields of education, business, public services and the media.
Why is Language Rich Europe important?
We believe that a positive attitude towards multilingualism is important for a prosperous and stable Europe. The ability to communicate in other languages is essential if Europeans are to develop a broader international outlook and enhance their employment prospects. Good language policies and practices can create a positive framework within which successful language learning can take place.
Conclusions and Recommendations
The Conclusions and Future Perspectives of the project is available to download. The study made a series of ten recommendations spanning: policy statements, education, media and press, public services and spaces, and business. The recommendations can be downloaded below.