Learning the language of understanding

Dr Max Richter, MSI (centre) in Jakarta with senior managers from Indonesia’s Ministry of State Secretariat; Mr Robert McKelleher, DFAT (left of Dr Richter) and Mr Raymond Ash, President Director Austraining Nusantara (right of Dr Richter).
Dr Max Richter, MSI (centre) in Jakarta with senior managers from Indonesia’s Ministry of State Secretariat; Mr Robert McKelleher, DFAT (left of Dr Richter) and Mr Raymond Ash, President Director Austraining Nusantara (right of Dr Richter).

A delegation of 25 officials from Indonesia’s Ministry of State Secretariat is visiting Monash to develop capability in translation and interpreting as part of the Australian Government’sAustralia Awards Fellowship program. The Ministry of State Secretariat (Republic of Indonesia) provides technical, administrative and analytical support to the President and to the Vice-President. 

The new 10-week interactive program was developed by the Monash Sustainability Institute (MSI) in partnership with the School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures, and Linguistics (SLLCL). The visiting fellows, who are drawn from across the Indonesian archipelago, are responsible for providing translation and interpreting services to various Indonesian government agencies.

The MSI’s Dr Paul McShane said the Institute’s work in knowledge management had prompted the initiative.

“Language offers a window to culture and aligning culture and policy is important in promoting sustainable development,” he said. “Links to key Indonesian agencies through this program will reinforce MSI’s and Indonesia’s shared interests in linking research to policy, for example in responding to climate change.”

Monash is the only Australian university to be a member of Conference Internationale d’Instituts Universitaires de Traducteurs et Interpretes (CIUTI), the world’s oldest and most prestigious international association of tertiary institutions offering degrees in translation and interpreting. It is also the only Australian university to be listed on the directory of the International Association of Conference Interpreters.

Head of SLLCL Associate Professor Rita Wilson welcomed the opportunity to engage with Indonesia.

“Our school offers professional training in translation and interpreting targeted to the Government of Indonesia’s needs,” she said. “A combination of theoretically informed seminars and practical workshops with Australian Government departments and industry partners will provide real-world opportunities for the fellows to develop their skills. While the Indonesian fellows learn from us, we will gain a deeper understanding of the socio-cultural aspects of language services across the archipelago in Indonesia, reinforcing the international reach of our school.”

The current program is expected to be the first of many supported by an enduring collaboration between Monash University and Indonesia. The Indonesian fellows are at Monash until the end of August.

 

 

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