Trans-European Language Resources Infrastructure - II

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Communication in a Multilingual Europe


By choice and by tradition, Europe's identity is founded on cultural and linguistic plurality. Today, we are experiencing the emergence of an integrated and, at the same time, multilingual society. To meet the global challenges facing Europe, we must promote skills to overcome language barriers, not just for the select few, but for everyone. We must provide them access to information, regardless of its source language, and we must enable citizens in Europe to communicate with each other, regardless of their native languages.

Europe is larger than the European Union. The countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the Newly Independent States (former Soviet Union) are a genuine and essential part of Europe. A common European identity goes hand in hand with a pan-European common market. Europe stands for diversity in unity.


TELRI brings together more than thirty renowned national language centres in the whole of Europe, including the Newly Independent States. It is the only pan-European network in its field. TELRI partners share an impressive record in language research, in the creation of high-quality language resources, in developing techniques for processing linguistic data, and in designing data-driven software for monolingual and multilingual applications. TELRI pools the resources, tools, specific expertise, and general competence of its partners and of cooperating institutions all over the world.

The first TELRI Concerted Action three years until December 1997. The second TELRI Concerted Action will run for three years from January 1999.
TELRI carries out joint activities aimed at facilitating communication in a multilingual Europe:

  • Multilingual information indexing, filtering, retrieval tools (for Internet and WWW)
  • Authoring systems that help to write texts in a foreign language

  • A translation platform helping to make good translations quicker
In addition, TELRI offers:
  • Annual seminars on multilingual issues
  • Training in corpus linguistics
  • Dissemination of linguistic data, knowledge, and ideas
  • TRACTOR: the TELRI Research Archive of Computational Tools and Resources
  • Internet information services and printed publications 

Our partners use the TELRI framework for multilateral projects and for joint ventures with industrial partners. TELRI closely interacts with the European Commission and other public or private funding authorities to explore chances for new projects. Two examples:

The Plato Project

TELRI partners are in the process of bringing together and aligning versions of Plato's Republic in a unique parallel corpus. In workshops and seminars, multiple approaches were explored for extracting multilingual lexical data and for testing hypotheses of translation equivalence (see newsletters, most recently No. 9). 11 aligned parallel texts and relevant query tools are available on a TELRI CD-ROM. More versions are still being collected and encoded. A section of the work can be consulted online.

The Bridge Joint Venture

More than ten TELRI partners have set up a consortium with publishers with the objective to localize and globalize the English COBUILD Student Dictionary. A plentitude of bilingual versions (English/local language) will generate a multilingual lexicon to be used for the automatic generation of bilingual dictionaries of lesser-used languages. For the localized version, our partners have contracted local dictionary publishers. 


TELRI offers comprehensive service, expert consultation, application-oriented language data, and customized software solutions with partners in many low-wage countries able to offer competitive rates. It will guarantee the quality of its service. With its global links, TELRI is the ideal partner of small- and medium-sized enterprises in language industry, both for the development of new applications and for the localization and globalization of existing software. For more information, contact: The Centre for Corpus Linguistics; Department of English; Edgbaston; Birmingham B15 2TT; UK or mail


The Institut für Deutsche Sprache (IDS) is the central institution devoted to empirical research on the German language. Using continuously growing textual and lexical resources (e.g., monitor corpora), the IDS, with its academic staff of more than 60 researchers in permanent positions, establishes authoritatively the current usage of spoken and written German. Due to its well-established links on the national and European level, the IDS was chosen by the European Commission to coordinate the first TELRI Concerted Action (1995-1997). 


In the year 2000 the Birmingham university has become a new home for TELRI-II project, due to its active part as a TELRI partner in previous years, and also due to the fact that the TELRI co-ordinator Prof. Wolfgang Teubert has moved from Mannheim to Birmingham. For more information contact:

    The Centre for Corpus Linguistics
    Department of English
    Birmingham B15 2TT
    Phone: +44 (0)121 414 5688
    Fax: +44 (0)121 414 6053

(C) TELRI, 09.02.2001