SOAS University of London has been ranked first in the UK and joint fifth in the world for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions”. The Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings are designed for research-intensive global universities and are dominated by indicators of research excellence. It provides a showcase for the impact of work being delivered by universities in communities, and it is an opportunity to shine a light on institutional activities and efforts not covered in other rankings. The Endangered Languages Documentation Programme‘s (ELDP) activities were submitted among various others.
Apart from providing funding for Language Documentation projects, ELDP also trains grantees and local scholars in modern language documentation methods, consequently building capacity in the next generation of scholars active in the preservation of linguistic diversity. In order to make these training more accessible, ELDP also trains scholars through in-country summer schools. Previous trainings took place in Ghana, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Russia, China, Mexico, Morocco and Indonesia. The documentary materials resulting from ELDP grants are preserved and made available online and openly accessible in the Endangered Language Archive (ELAR) housed at the SOAS library.
SOAS scored highly in “Sustainable Cities and Communities” (ranking in the top ten in the UK and 40th in the world) as it provides public access to Brunei Gallery, Senate House and SOAS Library including special collections and archives, like ELAR.
In 2002 ELDP received a donation of £20 million from Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbeth Rausing and Peter Baldwin. In 2015, ELDP received a further $11 million from Arcadia. Peter Baldwin and Lisbeth Rausing said: “Arcadia’s original grant of £20m has documented more than 350 endangered languages from across the world, making them freely available to all in an online, open access archive. It has also transformed the discipline of linguistics by enabling more field work. We are delighted to continue to support the programme we started at SOAS in 2002.”