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Press Room

This page is intended for journalists wishing to obtain further information about the 2nd International Conference "Interpreting the Future" of the Federal Association of Translators and Interpreters (Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e. V. (BDÜ)).

Point of contact for journalists:

golms communications
Birgit Golms M. A.
BDÜ Press-Officer
Tel.:  +49 (0)30 886276-44
Fax:  +49 (0)30 886276-45


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Press Kit

2nd International “Interpreting the Future” Conference

From 28 to 30 September 2012, the German Interpreters and Translators Association BDÜ will be hosting its 2nd international conference entitled “Interpreting the Future”. Around 150 practically relevant presentations, seminars and workshops, a job exchange and a trade exhibition await the participants. The opening speech will be delivered by Prof. Dr. Annette Schavan, Federal Minister of Education and Research. The patrons of the international conference are Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism, Sport, Media and Youth, and Wolfgang Steimels, President of Germany’s Federal Language Service (Bundessprachenamt). The event, which 1300 people from Germany and abroad are expected to attend, is to take place at the Henry Ford Building of Freie Universität Berlin. In Germany, it is regarded as a “must go” event for translators and interpreters in 2012.

The theme for this year’s conference is “Translators and Interpreters: Experts for International Communication in Specialised Fields”, putting the focus on the expertise of interpreters and translators and the trend towards specialisation. While translators and interpreters were formerly often generalists working in many different areas, they tend now to adopt closely defined specialisations. Market requirements have contributed greatly to this trend. The current requirements are reflected in the focal topics of the lectures, seminars and workshops. There are, for example, presentations on terminology work, interpreting in court and in the health service, new IT developments for translators and current trends in conference interpreting. Seminars and workshops will provide initial insights into specialist fields such as nanotechnology or financial derivatives for translators wishing to work in those areas. There will also be a series of events aimed specifically at freelancers, dealing with topics such as marketing, business development and positioning.

From professionals for professionals

The speakers at the conference are themselves mostly interpreters and translators, both freelancers and employees. They are firmly rooted in professional practice, and are willing to pass their knowledge on to their colleagues. Following the Call for Papers by the organisers, around 170 proposals for presentations, seminars and workshops were received from across the globe, and were published on the conference website. Over 1,100 language professionals selected their favourites from that list. As both the participants and the speakers come from various countries, many of the sessions will be interpreted – depending on the source language – into German, English or French.

“Interpreting the Future”

With the active involvement of the interpreters and translators in shaping the programme, the conference will present a lively and up-to-date picture of the language professions. As the title of the conference indicates with its play on words, the broad range of highly specialised events at the conference is intended to assist every individual interpreter and translator to understand and respond successfully to what the future holds for them.

Trade exhibition and job exchange

In addition to the presentations, seminars and workshops, a trade exhibition accompanying the conference will provide participants with the opportunity to examine at first hand how the “tools of the trade” of interpreting and translating have progressed. There are exhibition booths from publishers of textbooks and dictionaries, developers of translation memory systems, suppliers of interpreting equipment and providers of further services for the daily work of translators and interpreters.

At the job exchange, both new entrants to the profession and experienced language professionals will be able to establish direct contact with potential customers and employers. German and European companies and organisations will provide information on the professional prospects and career opportunities they offer. The exhibitors include, for example, The European Commission with their two language services, DG Translation and DG Interpretation,  the Directorate-General for Interpretation and Conferences of the European Parliament and the German Federal Language Service (Bundessprachenamt). The complete list of organisations taking part in the trade exhibition and job exchange can be found on the conference website at


Participants can register for the conference on the conference website at until 10th of September. There is an option to register for the full three days of the conference or to book a ticket for a single day. Discounts are available for members of the BDÜ, members of FIT associations, and students. The prices for attendance on all three days of the conference, including food and beverages, are as follows:

  • Regular price: EUR 390* / EUR 475 (day ticket: EUR 200)
  • BDÜ members**: EUR 290* / EUR 375 (day ticket: EUR 150)
  • Students: EUR 125* / EUR 180 (day ticket: EUR 80)

*     With early booking discount (on registration and payment by 31 May 2012)

**    Reduced attendance fee also available to members of other FIT associations (e.g. ADÜ Nord, ASTTI, ATICOM, ITI, Universitas and VÜD), members of DTT (Deutscher Terminologie-Tag) and of tekom.


The conference data at a glance:
2nd International “Interpreting the Future” Conference
“Translators and Interpreters: Experts for International Communication in Specialised Fields”
28 - 30 September 2012
Start: Friday, 12.30 p.m. (Doors open at 9.00 a.m.)
Finish: Sunday, 3.00 p.m.
Freie Universität Berlin, Henry-Ford-Bau, Garystrasse 35,14195 Berlin-Dahlem


About the international “Interpreting the Future” conference:
The international “Interpreting the Future” conference is an event organised by the Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e. V. (BDÜ), with the aim of creating a platform for the exchange of information and experience between interpreters and translators from across the globe. Together with presentations, seminars and workshops, the conference includes a job exchange and a trade exhibition. Around 1,600 people from over 40 countries took part in the first conference in September 2009. BDÜ Weiterbildungs- und Fachverlagsgesellschaft mbH, a company owned and managed by the BDÜ, is the organiser of the event. Further information on the conference can be found at

About the Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e.V. (BDÜ):
The Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e.V. (BDÜ) is the largest association serving the profession in Germany, with over 7,000 members. Established in 1955, it now represents over 75 percent of all organised interpreters and translators in Germany. BDÜ membership is a quality mark, as all members are required to demonstrate their professional qualifications before being accepted into the association (

2nd International “Interpreting the Future” Conference
Poster 2nd International “Interpreting the Future” Conference (Internet)
Poster 2nd International “Interpreting the Future” Conference (CYMK)
Programme overview
Introduction to the BDÜ

The Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e.V. (BDÜ) (Federal Association of Interpreters and Translators) was established in 1955. With more than 7,000 members, it represents 75 per cent of all organized interpreters and translators in Germany. It is Germany’s largest association of professional linguists and advocates their interests at national level and abroad. The Federal Association, which has its head office in Berlin, is the umbrella body representing the 13 constituent associations of the BDÜ, which either work at regional level or specialize in a particular occupational sector (such as the BDÜ’s Association of Conference Interpreters).

Admission to membership of the BDÜ is subject to strict criteria requiring evidence of expertise and pertinent professional qualifications gained through either specialist study or successful completion of an officially accredited examination. Entrants from other occupational fields have to possess an academic degree and at least seven years of professional experience. Clients can confidently regard membership of the BDÜ as a sure mark of quality.

The BDÜ holds more than 200 seminars per year for interpreters and translators, with the aim of assisting them to enhance their professional qualifications. It also supports the next generation of professional linguists by offering student membership at reduced rates as well as consultancy for business start-ups.

The BDÜ’s bi-monthly publication “MDÜ” is the most widely circulated professional journal for interpreters and translators in German-speaking countries. BDÜ Weiterbildungs- und Fachverlagsgesellschaft mbH, a company established by the BDÜ, publishes books on specialist topics in this field and organizes seminars and professional conferences for interpreters and translators. Further information on the BDÜ and its membership databank search facilities for identifying suitably qualified interpreters and translators are available at

Introduction to the BDÜ


Press Releases

Successful conclusion of the International Translators' Conference in Berlin (01.10.2012)

(Berlin) The International Conference "Interpreting the Future" 2012, hosted by the BDÜ in the German capital, concluded on 30 September – World Translators' Day. "Our second international conference was a resounding success, attended by 1,350 people from all over the world", said André Lindemann, President of the BDÜ. "If we all take home the spirit of inspiration encountered over these last three days, and actually use it to influence our work, this will be a huge step forward – for all participants and for our association." During the closing ceremony, the BDÜ presented its "St Jerome Award" (Hieronymus-Preis des BDÜ) for the first time, honouring germanBelt Systems GmbH, based in Bad Blankenburg/Thuringia for its outstanding achievements in multilingual communications.

Professor Dr Annette Schavan, German Minister of Education and Research, gave the opening speech at the conference. Her address received several minutes of applause – translators and interpreters present showed their appreciation for the high esteem Minister Schavan had shown for their profession in her speech. "I would like to assure you of the high respect I have for your demanding job", she said, having emphasised the important role translators and interpreters play in business and science. Minister Schavan qualified competence in international communications a "key to German success": "My heartfelt thanks for your work, and for everything we can learn from you."

Rytis Martikonis, Director-General of DG Translation at the European Commission, discussed the changed working conditions faced by translators within his Directorate in his keynote speech on 29 September. He explained that whilst the volume of information to be translated keeps growing, the resources available are limited – which is why CAT tools, machine translation and the use of terminology databases are gaining importance. According to Mr Martikonis, the shape of the translating profession is also changing – translators no longer simply transfer texts from one language to another, they have become communications experts in multilingual organisations. There are 2,500 translators working in GD Translation, of which 130 translate from or into German.

Fair weather – good mood

The mood at the conference was relaxed: satisfied participants had come to Berlin from 33 different countries, including China and New Zealand. Enjoying the sunny autumn weather in Berlin, they used the three conference days for training and education, exchanging experience, and for networking. The spacious facilities of the Henry Ford Building at the Free University of Berlin provided the perfect setting: 150 speeches, panel discussions and workshops reflected a cross-section of topics moving the industry – covering current trends in translating and interpreting, machine translation or how to acquire business, to name but a few.

"Smaller workshops covering specific professional topics were in particular demand, such as technical or legal translation, or business skills such as self-marketing", said Wolfram Baur, Managing Director of BDÜ Weiterbildungs- und Fachverlagsgesellschaft mbH, the conference organiser. "Network meetings and the Jobs Exchange were also very popular", he added. Participants used the conference breaks to gather information at more than 20 booths at the trade fair – getting to know the latest developments in computer-assisted translation software, for example. For those who missed out on the International Conference, the comprehensive rendition of the conference proceedings "Übersetzen in die Zukunft" is available (at EUR 25 plus postage) on the internet: .

The next major event for translators and interpreters will take place in 2014: the 20th World Congress of FIT (Fédération Internationale des Traducteurs) in Berlin. The BDÜ will host the FIT World Congress on behalf of FIT, the international federation of translators' and interpreters' associations from more than 60 countries, in cooperation with BDÜ Weiterbildungs- und Fachverlagsgesellschaft.

Press photographs:

Free press photographs from the conference are all available in the online press area of the Conference Website. Please mention the name of the photographer: ©Thorsten Weddig

About the International Conference "Interpreting the Future":

The International Conference "Interpreting the Future" is hosted by the German Federal Association of Interpreters and Translators (BDÜ e.V.). With this conference, the BDÜ provides a European platform for professional exchange amongst translators and interpreters from all over the world. Besides presentations, seminars and workshops, the conference includes a jobs exchange and a trade fair. The event is organised by BDÜ Weiterbildungs- und Fachverlagsgesellschaft mbH, BDÜ's subsidiary for training, education and specialist publishing. For more information about the event, please visit .

About the Bundesverband der Dolmetscher und Übersetzer e. V. (BDÜ):

Established in 1955, the BDÜ is Germany's largest association representing professional linguists. With more than 7,000 members, the BDÜ represents 75% of all organised translators and interpreters in Germany. Membership of the BDÜ is a sure mark of quality: all potential members have to present evidence of their professional qualifications before they can join the Association. More details are available on .

Press Release Successfull conclusion
Photograph: Keynote Annette Schavan, German Minister of Education and Research
Photograph: Keynote Rytis Martikonis, Director-General of DG Translation at the European Commission
Photograph: Opening Speech André Lindemann, President BDÜ
Photograph: Keynote Eyvor Fogarty, President FIT Europe
Photograph: Networking (Hall)
Photograph: Henry Ford Building at the Free University of Berlin
Photograph: Networking (Job Exchange)
Translators’ association awards BDÜ Hieronymus prize to germanBelt Systems GmbH (30.09.2012)

(Berlin/Bad Blankenburg) On 30 September, the World Translators Day, the Federal Association of Interpreters and Translators in Germany (BDÜ) awarded for the very first time the BDÜ Hieronymus Prize. From now on, the association will award this prize on a regular basis to companies who show exemplary commitment to “multilingual communication”.  This year’s prize goes to germanBelt Systems GmbH from Bad Blankenburg in Thuringia. The medium-sized company is an internationally operating manufacturer and supplier of components in materials handling and wear protection technology. The prize was awarded during the closing ceremony held at the BDÜ’s international “Interpreting the Future” conference in Berlin. BDÜ president André Lindemann handed the prize, a glass cuboid, in the afternoon to Uwe Hickmann, managing shareholder of germanBelt. The prize is named after St. Jerome, the patron of translators, who has his feast day on the 30th of September.

“By awarding the Hieronymus Prize the BDÜ honours a company whose performance in the field of multilingual communication is exemplary, as our jury found“, says André Lindemann. In spring, the association had asked their members to name companies that would deserve such an award. By assessing the candidates along certain criteria, the jury chose germanBelt Systems GmbH which is a company that pays special attention to the quality of communication in foreign languages. Whether marketing texts or contracts, the company has any text translated into their customers’ language by external providers. Therefore the company cooperates with its translators on a long-term basis and includes them in its internal processes. André Lindemann points out: “germanBelt Systems GmbH is an excellent example of how productive, helpful and valuable this cooperation with external translators and interpreters can be for all parties involved”.

Uwe Hickmann expressed his thanks for the award: “We are very pleased about the support we receive in the field of translation from such experienced partners. We place the greatest value on quality and see our translators as strong partners who assist us in being internationally successful.” The company has been a player on the international market for some years and has customers in more than 30 countries. Since 2010, it has been running a subsidiary in the United Arab Emirates.

Press Release BDÜ Hieronymus prize