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Speakers and Abstracts

The conference will be opened by Prof Helen Spencer-Oatey (University of Warwick).

The plenary lectures will be delivered by:

Prof Jennifer Jenkins (University of Southampton)

"English as a Lingua Franca: the research agenda moves on ..."
It is widely recognised that English is, for now, the primary global language and that its most extensive contemporary use is as a lingua franca, or ELF. It is also widely recognised that the vast majority of ELF users are those for whom English is not the first language. Over the past decade, a number of ELF corpora have been compiled and have demonstrated how speakers from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds use ELF successfully in their personal, professional and academic lives. Earlier ELF research drew on these corpora to provide analyses of potential grammatical, lexical, phonological, and pragmatic ELF features. More recently, in line with increasing empirical evidence of the context-related fluidity of ELF, the research focus has shifted to exploring how these features function in communication. This, in turn, has raised interesting questions about traditional orientations to sociolinguistic notions such as 'language variety' and 'speech community'. It has also led to more practical concerns relating to English language policies and practices. In my talk I will discuss the evolving ELF research agenda and, with the support of new focus group data, will go on to consider the issues it exposes for academic English language policies and institutional practices.
Jennifer Jenkins is Chair of Global Englishes and founding director of the Centre for Global Englishes at the University of Southhampton. She has been conducting research into English as a Lingua Franca for over twenty years, and published numerous articles on the subject as well as two monographs, The Phonology of English as an International Language (OUP 2000) and English as a Lingua Franca: Attitude and Identity (OUP 2007). She has also published a university course book, World Englishes. A Resource Book for Students (Routledge 2009, 2nd ed), and co-edited several volumes, including Global Englishes in Asian Contexts (Palgrave 2009, with Kumiko Murata). She is currently working on a third monograph, English as a Lingua Franca in the International University. The politics of academic English language policy, to be published by Routledge.

and Prof Winnie Cheng (Hong Kong Polytechnic University)

"What can I do with a corpus?"
The talk addresses the question 'What can I do with a corpus?' by illustrating what we have done in Hong Kong once we had compiled a number of corpora. The talk describes a number of research projects that have usefully investigated the 2-million-word Hong Kong Corpus of Spoken English (HKCSE), comprised of academic, business, conversation, and public sub-corpora, and applied theoretical frameworks and methodologies from conversation analysis, corpus linguistics, intercultural communication, and intercultural pragmatics. One of the projects compared the HKCSE and a corpus of Hong Kong English language textbooks in terms of the speech acts of disagreement, giving an opinion, checking understanding, self-correction, other-correction, and thanking, and discussed the relative frequencies of usage, linguistic forms, and pragmalinguistic realisations. The implications of the findings for learning English are explored along with the feasibility of incorporating classroom-based corpus linguistics research by language learners themselves.
Winnie Cheng is Professor of English and Director of the Research Centre for Professional Communication in English (RCPCE) in the Department of English at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She is also Adjunct Professor at University of International Business and Economics, Beijing; Ningbo Institute of Technology, Zhejiang University; and Zhejiang Sci-Tech University in China. She is Foundation Fellow of the Hong Kong Academy of the Humanities. She is Chief Editor of the Asian ESP Journal, and Secretary/Treasurer of the LSP & Professional Communication Association. Her research interests include English for specific purposes (ESP), intercultural business and professional communication, intercultural pragmatics, corpus linguistics, conversational analysis, discourse analysis, discourse intonation, outcome-based education, work-integrated education, and collaborative learning and assessment.