Logo: MPI Workshop on electronic dictionaries of minor languages
June 10, 2013


Martin Haspelmath (Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology)


MPI-EVA Leipzig, 1st floor seminar room
(please tell the organizer if you are planning to attend the workshop)


June 10, 2013


9:30-10:00 Martin Haspelmath & Robert Forkel: Publishing electronic dictionaries as linked data
10:00-10:30 Iren Hartmann & Hans-Jörg Bibiko: Dictionaries of Siouan languages
10:30-11:00 Matthew Dryer (U Buffalo & MPI-EVA): Dictionaries of Walman and Srenge (Torricelli family, Papua New Guinea)
11:00-11:15 break
11:15-11:45 Jeff Good (U Buffalo): The LEGO and RELISH projects
11:45-12:15 Kilu von Prince (ZAS Berlin): Print dictionaries for communities and online dictionaries for researchers: Daakaka and Dalkalaen (Vanuatu)
12:15-13:00 lunch break
13:00-13:30 Diana Schackow:A lexical database of Yakkha (Kiranti)
13:30-14:00 Michael Cysouw (U Marburg): Using electronic dictionaries
14:00-14:30 Bruce Birch (ANU & MPI Nijmegen): The Ma! Project: Using smartphone/tablet apps to build dictionary databases
14:30-14:45 Nick Thieberger (U Melbourne): Vanuatu dictionaries
14:45-15:45 general discussion

Related project

This workshop is part of the preparations for a planned "dictionary journal" project. Below is the summary of the project proposal.

Open-access publication of linked dictionaries for cross-linguistic comparison

We are planning to start an open-access electronic journal that publishes dictionaries of minor languages in database format, for which we need funding for a start-up phase of three years (for one postdoc who coordinates the work in this initial phase). Collecting the words of as many languages around the world as possible is an important task of comparative linguistics, but traditional print publication of dictionaries of minor languages has become quite impossible. Existing online dictionaries are not regular refereed publications and thus do not contribute to career-building, and they are often made available outside a stable institutional context. Moreover, their entries are usually put on HTML pages that emulate the previous technology (paper pages), rather than exploiting the possibilities of electronic publication (database publication, using the principles of Linked Data). The technical prerequisites for a database publication of dictionaries already exist at our institutions, and many researchers have dictionaries that they would be interested in publishing but have no means to do so. Thus, all we need is to set up an editorial board, establish a workflow, publish a number of seed dictionaries and advertise the journal among the community of minor language researchers.

You can also download a full project description.