UNIGE document Scientific Article
previous document  unige:152281  next document
add to browser collection
Title

„Inhalt des Originalsatzes unklar…“ Verständlichkeit und Vereinfachung von Schweizer Verwaltungstexten: Eine empirische Untersuchung im Kontext der Mehrsprachigkeit

Authors
Published in Parallèles. 2021, vol. 33, no. 1, p. 133-156
Abstract Switzerland is particularly sensitive to issues of accessible communication and strives for institutional transparency and citizen inclusion. Since most of the drafting takes place in German and the texts are later translated into French and Italian, language clarity is further at the stake because of interlingual translation. Moving from the Swiss multilingual context, we explored the accessibility of Swiss insurance leaflets in three languages (French, German, Italian). After a preliminary classification of the main linguistic difficulties (Griebel & Felici, 2018, Felici & Griebel, 2019), we tested language accessibility by the mean of crowdsourcing and other volunteers. Drawing from Höfler's experiment on prima vista comprehensibility and its subsequent application (Höfler et al., 2017), we asked the participants to evaluate the overall comprehensibility of some sentences and then to simplify them with some basic plain language rules. The main goal was to assess whether laypersons are aware of lexical and syntactical complexities and to what extent they are able to simplify administrative texts. Despite the presence of quite complex terminology, syntax was considered in the three languages as the main source of difficulty. The results also highlighted that the perceived comprehensibility is higher than the actual one, which is more in line with our linguistic analysis. In fact, the simplification test showed that the sentences were not understood correctly by a relatively large number of people. This confirms that the simplification of administrative texts puts great demands on the possibilities and limits of reducing complexity, thus requiring cooperation between inhouse administrative and external language experts.
Keywords Accessible communicationAdministrative languagePlain languageSimplificationSwitzerland
Identifiers
Full text
Article (Published version) (715 Kb) - public document Free access
Structures
Research group Centre d'études en traduction juridique et institutionnelle (Transius)
Citation
(ISO format)
GRIEBEL, Cornelia, FELICI, Annarita. „Inhalt des Originalsatzes unklar…“ Verständlichkeit und Vereinfachung von Schweizer Verwaltungstexten: Eine empirische Untersuchung im Kontext der Mehrsprachigkeit. In: Parallèles, 2021, vol. 33, n° 1, p. 133-156. doi: 10.17462/para.2021.01.09 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:152281

88 hits

46 downloads

Update

Deposited on : 2021-06-10

Export document
Format :
Citation style :