SIL Philippines

Second Philippine Language Summit, 2017. Manila

A second Philippines Language Summit took place on April 21, 2017, at the Language Research Center (SIL Philippines). Twenty-four participants from 12 HEIs were in attendance, along with (four) representatives from the Commission on Higher Education (CHED). The purpose of the Summit was to inform, to answer questions and to encourage the universities to submit their completed applications to the Philippines Language Research Development Project that DepEd, CHED, and SIL initiated jointly in 2016.

SIL Director Jason Griffiths reminded attendees of the vision of Br. Armin A. Luistro, former Secretary of Education and SIL advisory Council Member, who inspired attendees at the first Language Summit (April 2016) with his motto, “No language should be an orphan”; and who encouraged the universities to work with local minority language communities to establish ‘Hubs’ for language research and development.

Dr. William Hall, the SIL Philippines Language Assessment & Documentation Team Leader, challenged the audience with regard to the social obligation of monitoring and updating the current data in the Ethnologue, to provide researchers and aid agencies with reliable, up-to-date data. This is a task, he said, that “we cannot do without you.”

Mr. Gerhald Villasis, Coordinator of the SE Grant Fund, CHED, presented an update; and Ms. Clarissse Gomez also invited the participants to consider language research in the innovative field of Art and Culture, where they are expecting to invest more CHED resources for “transforming higher education through culture and the arts.”

Ms. Rynj Gonzales presented an update on the current status of the Philippines Language Research Development Project and the next activities. Along with Levi Cruz, Rynj led participants in a cause-and-effect tree diagram, a participatory activity to discover the causes and effects of becoming part of the PLRDP. Through the exercise, participants discovered that “there is a strong interest for partnership and strengthening the research and extension program of their universities, putting their theory into practice.”