Some thoughts on the ITI Conference, Sheffield, May 2019
by Stevan Ulama, Supplier Relations Manager
Even though I have been to several conferences before, the ITI (Institute of Translation and Interpreting) Conference in Sheffield this year was my first in my new role as Supplier Relations Manager at Albion Languages. I really enjoyed it and would like to share some thoughts and photos from the conference with you.
The conference was well-organised and planned, with the main venue being Cutler’s Hall. This historical building is outstanding, with its present appearance dating back to 1832. Its indoor splendour isn’t easy to describe in words (better see the photos 😊). It seems a great choice for conferences and such events due to the many lovely smaller rooms such as the Old Banqueting Room, Drawing Room, Reception Room, etc. Although they are all wonderful, I’m quite certain the Main Hall would take your breath away!
There were many interesting and useful lectures covering several hot topics in translation and interpreting, such as: MT and post-editing, trends in translation, translators’ fears over Brexit, the future of the ITI, etc. Even though it is very difficult to pick one, I hope no-one will mind me highlighting the Keynote speech by Oliver Kamm, entitled “Asterix and Linguistix: the Science of the Translated Word” in which Oliver effortlessly and upliftingly talked about his mother Anthea Bell’s magnificent translation opus but also about the importance of translation and language learning in general. It reminded me of why I studied linguistics and how interesting and rewarding dealing with any linguistic issue can be.
My primary aim in attending the ITI conference was to meet as many new translators as possible and discuss possible cooperation. That proved to be a success too! I met and talked to many very kind and professional translators with whom we are now signing contracts for future cooperation. All of them were very pleasant and ready to talk to me about their experience and future plans. It just shows the extent to which ITI is a professional organisation whose members are carefully selected and always ready for more CPD (Continuous Professional Development)!
Finally, I would like to mention the city of Sheffield or “the Steel City” as a lovely choice of city for staging the conference. Even though it is famous for its key role in the Industrial Revolution, I would also like to highlight the fact that 61% of the city as a whole is green space, with about 250 parks, woodlands, and gardens. No wonder it has won the Green Flag Award (national quality standard for parks and green spaces)!
To sum up then, the ITI Conference was a successful and very enjoyable experience for me. Spending a few days in Sheffield, learning about its history and culture on the spot and attending the ITI conference and meeting new translators showed me that it was all worthwhile. I am already looking forward to attending the next ITI Conference in 2 years’ time!