Elizabeth Lanza

Image of Elizabeth Lanza
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47 22856751
Mobile phone +47 47278761
Room HW 446
Available hours By appointment
Visiting address ILN Henrik Wergelands hus 1. etasje (ekspedisjonen) Niels Henrik Abels vei 36 N-0313 OSLO
Postal address Postboks 1102 Blindern 0316 Oslo

Elizabeth Lanza is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Oslo and Director of the Center for Multilingualism in Society across the Lifespan (MultiLing).

Teaching and tutoring

Bilingualism/ Multilingualism, Sociolinguistics, Discourse analysis and interactional analysis, Linguistic Landscape, and Research methodology


Elizabeth Lanza is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Oslo and Director of the Center for Multilingualism in Society across the Lifespan (MultiLing) (opened 2013), funded by the Research Council of Norway's Centre of Excellence scheme. For the period of January 2007 to March 2008, she was appointed Director of the French – Norwegian Centre for Research Collaboration in the Social Sciences and Humanities/Centre franco-norvégien en sciences sociales et humaines in Paris. Lanza is an elected member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.

Lanza received her PhD in Linguistics from Georgetown University in 1990 with a specialization in sociolinguistics. Her main field of interest and research is bilingualism/multilingualism. Her work is mainly sociolinguistically oriented, drawing specifically on perspectives from discourse analysis/conversation analysis.

She is on the Editorial Board of the journals International Journal of Bilingualism, Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, Linguistic Landscape, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, Journal of Multilingual Theories and Practices, Multilingual Margins and Journal of Postcolonial Linguistics. She is also on the editorial board of the online Journal of Home Language Research and the fully open access book series Current Issues in Bilingualism. Lanza was also on the board of the former book series IMPACT: Studies in Language and Society (John Benjamins).

Lanza is a member of: Scientific Committee of the Centre for Multilingualism and Diversities Research at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa; External Advisory Board of the Center for Multilingual and Intercultural Communication at Stony Brook University, USA; and Advisory Board of the AHRC funded (OWRI Open World Research Initiative) research project Language and Community in a Globalising World, Manchester University, UK (2016 - 2019). She was in the Steering Group of the 4-year (2014 - 2018) AHRC funded research project Translation and Translanguaging: Investigating Linguistic and Cultural Transformations in Superdiverse Wards in Four UK Cities; Advisory Committee for the British Academy funded Special Research Project on the Cognitive Benefits of Language Learning, University College London, UK (2016 - 2017); . She was also on the advisory board for a nationally funded research project on sociolinguistic variation in cities, including multilingualism (UPUS).

Lanza was the leader of the local organizing committee for the International Symposium on Bilingualism 8 ISB8 held in Oslo on June 15 - 18, 2011. At ISB8 she was elected Chair of the International Steering Committee of ISB for a four-year period (2011 - 2015). During her tenure as Chair, ISB9 was held in Singapore in June 2013 and ISB10 was held in New Jersey, USA in May 2015.

Ongoing and planned research projects at MultiLing and the Department of Linguistics and Scandinavian Studies

Lanza’s most recent work focuses on issues of language, culture and identity in multilinguals, with a particular focus on family language policy and language socialization. She is the leader of the research project MultiFam: Family language policy in multilingual transcultural families, funded by the Research Council of Norway (2015 - 2018). She was the leader of the interdisciplinary project Language, Culture and Identity in Migrant Narratives, also funded by the Research Council of Norway (2008 - 2013). She was a member of the NordForsk funded research network Identities in Motion: Multilingualism, Multiculturalism and Mobility - the 3M network, and served on the Steering Committee as Associate Director of the network (2009 - 2011). 

Lanza's research also encompasses language policy more generally. She was involved in a project on multilingualism in Ethiopia, funded by the Norwegian Council for Higher Education's Programme for Development Research and Education, in collaboration with Addis Ababa University. She continues to work on sociolinguistic issues in Ethiopia, particularly on the linguistic landscape and language ideologies.

Tags: Multilingualism, Migration, Language Socialization, Family Language Policy, Language Ideologies, Linguistic Landscapes, Interactional Sociolinguistics, Discourse Analysis
Published Dec. 14, 2010 3:13 PM - Last modified Oct. 22, 2021 4:32 PM