The Royal Irish Academy/Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann champions research. We identify and recognise Ireland’s world class researchers. We support scholarship and promote awareness of how science and the humanities enrich our lives and benefit society. We believe that good research needs to be promoted, sustained and communicated. The Academy is run by a Council of its members. Membership is by election and considered the highest academic honour in Ireland.

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Towards 250 years of Modern Languages at third level


Tuesday, December 12, 2023, 14:00 - 18:00


The Royal Irish Academy, 19 Dawson Street, Dublin 2.


SOLD OUT - join waitlist

The launch of an event series, that will run from 2023-2026, organised by the Royal Irish Academy's Languages, Literature, Culture and Communications Committee and the higher education institutions in Ireland to celebrate 250 years of Modern Language Studies at third level.

The launch event for #languages250 at the RIA in December 2023 is designed to open up conversations around the value and significance of languages across a range of sectors, including education, business, technology, science, politics, peace-building, diplomacy and culture. We will explore ways in which policy can support languages to overcome existing challenges and harness potential opportunities. In short, we will emphasize why languages matter. Ireland can boast of having the longest tradition of “institutionalised” modern language teaching in academia in the world, thanks to the first university positions in French, German, Italian and Spanish, established in Trinity College Dublin in 1776.

Topics and questions to be addressed at this and following events include: how can we enhance the offering and uptake of languages from early childhood years through to university and beyond? What might an all-Ireland languages strategy look like? How can we sustain and share best practice, also in view of migration and the increasing number of languages spoken in Ireland? How can languages be better supported in the Technological Universities and Further Education colleges? What do developments in Artificial Intelligence mean for the field? To what extent are languages integrated into the broader Irish academic landscape and discourse? How does this impact on Ireland in an increasingly transnational, European and global context?

The opening event in December 2023 in the RIA will be the first of four annual events, followed by an event in Queen’s University Belfast in 2024, in Limerick in 2025 and finally in 2026 in Trinity College Dublin, where the first chairs were established 250 years ago.

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