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MultiLing receives funding to achieve world-leading status

MultiLing, the Center for Multilingualism in Society Across the Lifespan, is one of five research communities at the University of Oslo that will receive funding from the Norwegian government for the recruitment of leading international scientists.

This year’s state budget has allocated a total of NOK 31.2 million to be used for the recruitment of leading international scientists to strengthen the academic communities and their research at the university.

On 23 June the University Board made the decision to distribute these funds between academic groups in the fields of medicine, economics, materials science and nanotechnology, psychology and linguistics.

MultiLing is one of those to receive funding.

- This is wonderful news! As a Centre of Excellence, MultiLing has high ambitions to become a world leader in the field of multilingualism. The budget allocation by the University Board will make an important contribution to the achievement of our ambition to acquire leading international status, says Elizabeth Lanza, Director of the Centre.

MultiLing conducts research into multiple language acquisition, how we use these languages in different situations and life stages, and how social and political factors affect multilingualism. MultiLing was established as a Centre of Excellence (SFF) in 2013.

- MultiLing is one of our strongest research environments. The budget allocation is an expression of the fact that the humanities have an important place in the university’s efforts to show the relevance and significance of research in our present time, says Arne Bugge Amundsen, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, UiO.

Helping to boost MultiLing and the University

Elizabeth Lanza, senterleder MultiLing
Professor Elizabeth Lanza, Director, MultiLing – Center for Multilingualism in Society Across the Lifespan. (Photo: UiO)

The grant will help to associate world-leading researchers more closely with the University of Oslo. MultiLing wishes to recruit three Adjunct Professors, each with a PhD position and a Postdoctoral position attached to them.The funding will also be used to establish a multilingualism and cognition laboratory.

- Recruiting leading international researchers and providing them with a team is an investment in the future, as it gives them the opportunity to achieve something at the University, as well as to recruit young research talent, Lanza tells us.

Research at MultiLing

Although MultiLing is a relatively new research community, the centre has positioned itself well and is collaborating internationally with some of the foremost in its field.

The Centre’s team of researchers has increased steadily since its establishment and now numbers 35 members. It has a growing number of publications, and around half of these are written in collaboration with partners.

In the course of two years, MultiLing has:

  • established a research training school for PhD-candidates, to which international scientists are invited to give courses.
  • initiated the MultiFam project, which will research language policy in multilingual transcultural families.The project is funded by the Norwegian Research Council through FRIPRO.
  • initiated a research project on dementia in multilingual patients
  • implemented the research campaign “Taking the temperature of language”. A total of 4500 school pupils participated in a nationwide research effort to map the use of language and dialects in Norway.


By Camilla Chausse
Published June 30, 2015 1:44 PM - Last modified Feb. 14, 2020 3:46 PM