Two strands exist within our research underpinning impact work in transforming views on languages in NI.
Language identities in post-conflict NI
Official recognition and reconciliation Language is fundamentally connected to the politics and culture of a place.
In Nl, people’s affiliations to the Irish language or Ulster-Scots are often considered as markers of Irish or British identity respectively.
This is challenging in the context of recent conflict and is vastly different from other UK indigenous language communities (e.g. Scottish Gaelic and Welsh).
The Benefits of Multilingualism
Supporting Speakers, Informing Policy Makers. A second theme in our research has been multilingualism for migrant populations. Folli, Sevdali, Kennedy and Rhys demonstrated its substantial individual and societal benefits.
Focusing on cases of transfer of linguistic features between the weak and dominant language of a multilingual child, they found that the weaker language can appear to affect the more dominant language in certain grammatical features in a predictable way.
This indicates that innovative approaches are required to assist in supporting bilingual and/or multilingual ability.