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DELAMAN Franz Boas Award announced


Date: 5 October 2016

Congratulations to Sonja Riesberg, recipient of the DELAMAN Franz Boas Award.  The award recognises Sonja's outstanding documentary work on Central Papuan Summits Languages (West Papua, Indonesia). In a few months, Sonja will commence a post-doctoral fellowship with the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language (CoEDL) with a special focus on capacity building of linguists in West Papua.

Three CoEDL affiliates also received Honorable Mentions:  Christian Döhler, Komnzo (Papua New Guinea) who completed his PhD with CoEDL earlier this year, Darja Hoenigman, Awiakay (Papua New Guinea) and Kilu von Prince, Daakaka (Vanuatu). An honorable mention also went to Justin D. McIntosh, Teotepec Eastern Chatino (Mexico).

The award recognises junior scholars creating a rich multimedia documentary collection of a language that is endangered or no longer spoken. In its announcement, DELAMAN said the committee had a difficult task in evaluating the collections as each was an outstanding example of a major contribution to the preservation of endangered languages, “to the field of linguistics and ethnography and most importantly to language documentation”. Sonja’s collection was described as being rich in video recordings, including legacy material, and had strong community involvement in transcription and annotation. “It is an outstanding example of a large collaborative effort with a junior researcher at the core,” DELAMAN said in its release.

  • Australian Government
  • The University of Queensland
  • Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Western Sydney University