LT-Innovate believes that a language-neutral European Digital Single Market is unlikely to arise from market forces alone.

Today, citizens communicating in smaller-community languages cannot access the full range of digital offerings. So far, game changing analytics technologies only work well in English; translation engines only handle “major” languages effectively, and speech generation technologies simply do not exist for many European (and other) languages.

Hence, LT-Innovate calls upon the European industry and decision makers to unite their forces in creating a European Language Cloud.

The goal of the European Language Cloud should be to ease and speed up the deployment of multi-language and cross-language services supporting all European languages. European integration and business internationalisation are the main drivers pushing towards a Digital Single Market, which itself requires effective solutions for accessing and exchanging information, goods and services in Europe’s many languages.

The European Language Cloud would bring down considerably the costs of cross-border products and services and allow all Europeans to interact seamlessly across the 1 billion+ market of speakers of European languages. Moreover, it should also be capable of supporting the languages of our major trading partners, so as to ready European companies for the global marketplace.

This would be a major opportunity for the European economy and society, and create many new jobs.

New platforms, content, and applications are the key “layers” of the next generation of ICT markets. Platforms are emerging for all segments of LT. Although there are no dominant players yet (e.g. comparable to Microsoft Windows for the PC), there are certainly a number of leaders. A shared, open language technology infrastructure could be a game-changer providing services to suppliers and operators of public and private online services, and hosting multi-language facilities and components that can be used to build, customise and operate multi-national services of common interest.

The LT industry will contribute to the European Language Cloud by:

  • organising co-operative projects to develop common language resources for the Cloud (enticing resource owners to pool them and fill in the gaps);
  • building generic services/middleware and missing language resources;
  • promoting common standards and open-source resources and software;
  • forging strong partnerships with large language technology buyers, telecommunication operators and content/data owners.


Read also:

Blog article by LTi Chairman Jochen Hummel - 22/05/2014: Language Technology is the drill to make Big Data "oil" flow in Europe!

Survey report: European Software Companies need a Language Cloud! (results of the survey carried out by LT-Innovate in January-February 2014)

Survey report: Language Standards: can Europe take the lead? (results of the survey carried out by LT-Innovate in January-February 2014)

Blog article by LTi Chairman Jochen Hummel - 23/01/2014: "European software companies need a Language Cloud".

MLi Project - Towards a Multilingual Data and Services Infrastructure

Press release - 17/06/2013: Press release: LT-Innovate Summit 2013 - Language Technologies win recognition as an indispensable building block of the European Digital Single Market

Press release - 24/10/2012:  LT-Innovate welcomes the Connecting Europe Facility and calls for the inclusion of a Multilingual Digital Service Infrastructure as a matter of priority