Where Do We Need to Go From Here?



Call For Papers old

Where do we need to go from here?

Language documentation and archiving during the Decade of Indigenous Languages

05-07 October 2022

Jointly organised by ELAR and PARADISEC

2022 marks the beginning of the UNESCO International Decade of Indigenous Languages. The decade offers an important opportunity to join forces in the work of supporting Indigenous languages, to further develop practices and tools, and to extend and strengthen the networks we all rely on. Many lessons have been learned in the last 20 years of documentation and archiving, and all over the world activists, communities, researchers, and artists have developed documentation projects, apps, art installations, archival collections, films, and multimedia projects telling the many stories and histories of Indigenous languages and their creators and keepers. This conference brings together people working in this area to present papers, posters, and conduct training sessions aiming to develop capacity, present new approaches to documentation and preservation, and offer models of how we can create, strengthen, enhance, and amplify language records. The conference will create a platform to bring new ideas and views together, to share knowledge and to develop the agenda for the Decade.

We especially invite submissions on the following themes in language documentation and archiving:

Building Relationships:

  • Models for building relationships and refining approaches for collaboration with indigenous communities
  • Legacy collections: building relationships for discovery, preservation, and ethically-informed access
  • Critical perspectives on language archiving: post- or neo- colonial?
  • Identifying and responding to support needs and ethical considerations for improving the accessibility of language materials
  • Language documentation practice as a medium for indigenous agency and revitalization
  • Models for engaging and supporting indigenous communities in collaborative and community-driven documentation efforts
  • How to work with differing expectations among speech community members 

Tools and Techniques:

  • Documentary tools and practices (e.g., remote methods, tools & methods for projects with specific foci, tools & workflows for managing collaborative projects, etc.)
  • Indigenous ways of teaching & learning for documentation and language support
  • Enhancing annotation practices: orthography, translation, ethnography, and ethics
  • Improving tools to support the creation of archivable collections (e.g., ongoing software projects)
  • Using social media and other technologies to support and promote minoritized languages

Planning and Design for the Decade:

  • Reports from indigenous-led documentation, training, and revitalization projects
  • Language archiving: current assessment and future prospects
  • Approaches and solutions for making digital archives more navigable and engaging to indigenous communities
  • Models for providing access where there is little or no internet access
  • Engaging the broader public through artistic and educational initiatives drawing on archived language materials
  • Revising OLAC metadata and other standards for accessible archiving

Impacts of Documentation and Archiving:

  • Reports on how archived materials are being used by indigenous communities
  • What insights into language have documentary methods provided?
  • From paper to digital, the qualitative differences of language records
  • Archives presentation/poster on what they have done over the past decade and what they plan on doing 

Conference format

Conference format/venue and the COVID-19 pandemic

Our current plan is for the conference to take place in Berlin, Germany at the Berlin Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities.

During the week leading up to the conference, we will be running training sessions on all aspects of language documentation and preservation including: using metadata tools like Lameta, using transcription tools like ELAN, and to how to choose equipment. We welcome submissions for virtual training sessions and video tutorials. Please see the Trainings page for more information.

The conference will be organized around a variety of different means for teaching, sharing, and learning:

  • Presentations (20 mins)
  • Posters
  • Training sessions and tutorials (software, tools, methods, workflows, special topics)


Submissions with participation from community members and in collaboration with community members are strongly encouraged.

Submissions for 20 minute conference presentation:

Please submit anonymous abstracts of up to 300 words, excluding references. Submissions with participation from community members are strongly encouraged.
Please submit abstracts via EasyChair:

Submissions for poster presentations:

Please submit anonymous abstracts of up to 300 words, excluding references. Submissions with participation from community members are strongly encouraged.
Please submit abstracts via EasyChair:

Information on submitting proposals for virtual training sessions and tutorial videos can be found on the Trainings page.

Plenary speakers

To Be Announced

Registration costs

100 € faculty / 50 € postdocs & students / free for unemployed
*Indigenous participants are invited to register for free

Important dates

June 1st, 2022: Paper submission deadline
August 1st, 2022: Notification of acceptance
October 3-5, 2022: Training dates
October 5-7, 2022: Conference dates


For further information, please email the organizers at langdoc2022@gmail.com


Amanda Harris (PARADISEC)
Hanna Hedeland (ELAR)
Vera Ferreira (ELDP)
Julia Miller (PARADISEC)
Kelsey Neely (ELDP)
Mandana Seyfeddinipur (ELDP/ELAR)
Nick Thieberger (PARADISEC)

Scientific Committee

Pius Akumbu (CNRS Paris)
Felix Ameka (Leiden University)
Aleksandre Arkhipov (Hamburg University)
Linda Barwick (PARADISEC)
Steven Bird (Charles Darwin University)
Katherine Bolaños (University of Zurich)
Ana Paula Brandão (Federal University of Pará)
Gabriela Caballero (University of California, San Diego)
Gladys Camacho (University of Texas at Austin)
Onno Crasborn (Radboud University, Nijmegen)
Patience Epps (University of Texas at Austin)
James Essegby (University of Florida – Gainesville)
Jeff Good (University of Buffalo)
Birgit Hellwig (University of Cologne)
Gary Holton (University of Hawai’i Manoa)
Mary Linn (Smithsonian)
Alexis Michaud (CNRS)
Zachary O’Hagan (California Language Archive – University of California, Berkeley)
Gabriela Perez Baez (University of Oregon)
Pamela Perniss (University of Cologne)
Felix Rau (University of Cologne)
Jacques Vernaudon (University of French Polynesia)
Ana Vilacy Galucio (Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi)
Roberto Zariquiey (Pontifical Catholic University of Peru)
Alpheaus Zobule (Kulu Language Institute)