Sociolinguist Ingrid Piller to research at Universität Hamburg

Photo: Marcin Debski      Ingrid Piller investigates intercultural communication

Photo: Marcin Debski Ingrid Piller investigates intercultural communication, language acquisition, and multilingualism in the context of migration and globalization.

Third Anneliese Maier Research Award for Universität Hamburg: the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has awarded an Anneliese Maier Research Award worth 250,000 euros to Ingrid Piller. The sociolinguist researches at Australia’s Macquarie University in the field of intercultural communication and will spend several periods of research at Universität Hamburg. She was nominated by Ingrid Gogolin with the assistance of Drorit Lengyel from the Faculty of Education at Universität Hamburg.

Ingrid Piller is professor of applied linguistics at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, and researches in the field of intercultural communication, language acquisition, and multilingualism within the context of migration and globalization. Piller’s research focuses on the social consequences of language diversity: What opportunities does multilingualism offer for social participation? And how do difficulties experienced by migrants in the official national language affect cultural, economic, and political participation? During the course of her career, Piller has researched in Germany, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States of America.

Dieter Lenzen, President of Universität Hamburg said: "I congratulate Ingrid Piller and thank Ingrid Gogolin and Drorit Lengyel! As an educational scientist, it is a particular pleasure that our area of potential Literacy in Diversity Settings in the Faculty of Education can be strengthened with a scholar so distinguished as Professor Piller."

Research project on language education in multilingual societies

The Anneliese Maier Research Award provides Prof. Piller with the opportunity to collaborate with Universität Hamburg over the next five years in the research area of the Faculty of Education entitled Literacy in Diversity Settings. Piller, a linguist, will spend two research periods of several months each at Universität Hamburg: The first visit is planned for December 2018. The second for December 2021.

Host scholars at Universität Hamburg are Ingrid Gogolin and Drorit Lengyel from the Faculty of Education. Funding will enable the researchers to collaborate on the project entitled "Language Education in Linguistically Diverse Societies." The project comprises two parts: firstly, international knowledge transfer of Piller’s existing research on language education and, secondly, questions about the linguistic integration of children with a migration background. The project should also complete a study that clarifies how recently immigrated children and families deal with linguistic challenges in their new surroundings.

About the Anneliese Maier Research Award

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation awards up to 8 Anneliese Maier Research Awards each year. The prizes are worth 250,000 euros each and are awarded to outstanding researchers working abroad in the humanities and the social sciences. Candidates are nominated by cooperation partners at German universities and research institutions. The award funds research collaboration with the host institutions in Germany for a period of up to 5 years. The aim of the award is to further internationalization in the humanities and the social sciences in Germany and the program is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). In 2018, 8 winners were selected from among 111 nominees from 30 countries.

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