Conference in Friesland 12-14 September, 2013: Multilingualism – The Key Debates

The University of Groningen is launching a new MA programme in Multilingualism in September 2013, in cooperation with University Campus Fryslân (UCF) and the NHL Leeuwarden. To celebrate the launch of this new programme, we are organising the conference Multilingualism: The Key Debates. The conference will be held from 12 to 14 September in the only officially multilingual province of the Netherlands: Friesland



During the conference eight renowned scientists will meet to debate longstanding and pressing questions about multilingualism. The debates will be open to the general public. The confirmed debaters are:


Daniel L. Everett

Robert Phillipson

Geoffrey K. Pullum

Tove Skutnabb-Kangas

Abram de Swaan

Guillaume Thierry


For the general part of the conference researchers are invited to submit proposals for 20-minute presentations (plus 10 minutes for questions) relating to any aspect of research into multilingualism (or bilingualism). Topics may cover (but are not limited to)


• Multilingual language development

• Second language learning

• Generative approaches to second language acquisition • Language contact and change in multilingual communities • Language contact and change in bidialectal communities • Multilingual speech processing • Neurological foundations of multilingualism • Receptive multilingualism • Language attrition • Language shift and loss • Multilingual education • Language planning and policy making • Generative approaches to multilingualism


Abstracts should not exceed 400 words, and can be uploaded at


For queries about the conference, please contact multiling2013 at UCF dot nl


The scientific committee of Multilingualism – the Key Debates consists of:


Kees de Bot

Charlotte Gooskens

Petra Hendriks

Nanna Haug Hilton

Remco Knooihuizen

Goffe Jensma

Hanneke Loerts

Dennis Ott

Jeffrey Parrott

Alex Riemersma

Marjolijn Verspoor

Jan Wouter Zwart