As every year, the network of consultant interpreters to which I have had the honour of belonging for the past four years, Calliope-Interpreters, met for its annual seminar and General Assembly in early January. This time the meeting took place in the charming city of Oxford, a town with a long academic history and the ever-present Harry Potter imprint.
During three days of intense meetings at the distinguished Department of Continuing Education of Oxford University, new trends in simultaneous translation, consecutive interpretation, chuchotage, and the star of the moment, sign language interpretation, were discussed. The expert in this field, member of Calliope-Interpreters and the International Association of Conference Interpreters, Maya de Wit, presented the most frequently asked questions on sign language interpretation based on real-life examples in the European Parliament. Unfortunately, sign languages are not yet part of the set of official languages of the institutions of the European Union.
Sufficient time was devoted to discussing policies relating to visibility and social networks, an issue that always presents difficulties because of the fine line between the possibility of promoting our translation and interpretation services and the confidentiality that obliges us.
It is always fascinating to analyse the differences and similarities between markets, needs and users in the different countries in which we offer interpretation services, translation and simultaneous interpretation equipment from the City of Buenos Aires to Sydney, passing through Chile, Peru, Brazil and the United States, among many other countries.
Aware of the importance of general culture for interpreters, there was no shortage of touristic tours around the city of Oxford, university cloisters and the remnants of civilizations as old as the Roman one.
We arrived at the end of the three days with a suitcase full of tasks to carry out, plans to execute and the same desire to meet again in a year, somewhere else in the world.