Developing User-centred Approaches to Technological Innovation in Literary Translation (DUAL-T)

01 September 2022 → 31 December 2024
European funding: framework programme, Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Humanities
    • Literary translation
    • Scientific, technical and literary translation
    • Translation and interpretation sciences
Computer-Assisted Literary Translation Human-Computer Interaction Literary Translation Computer-Aided Translation Social Construction of Technology Translation Studies Language technology
Other information
Project description

Recent years have seen a growing research interest on the application of translation technology to literary translation workflows, mostly in the form of Machine Translation (MT) or post-editing of MT output. In these studies, literary translators' voices are virtually absent. This project will address the discrepancy between research in Computer Science/AI and Translation Studies, as well as the absence of literary translators from the conversation surrounding technological innovation in their profession. It will do so by proactively integrating literary translators' input in the co-creation of a new technology-inclusive workflow. Professional literary translators will be asked to perform literary translation tasks using (1) MT + post-editing, (2) a Computer-Aided Translation (CAT) tool environment, (3) a CAT tool environment with integrated MT. User testing will be performed using eye tracking, keystroke logging and screen capturing. In-depth interviews and focus groups will be conducted before and after the translation task to register changes in participants' attitudes towards technology before and after using it, as well as advantages and pain points of the tool employed. Being the first study of this kind in literary translation, results will help to (1) devise a technology-inclusive literary translation workflow employing a user-led approach, (2) assess whether and to what extent translation technology can enhance literary translators (particularly, the potential of CAT tools to work in combination with MT and/or as an alternative to MT-centric approaches will be assessed), and (3) mediate a dialogue between literary translators and translation technology developers by feeding back data on literary translators' use of and attitudes towards translation technology to the project's industry partner. It is expected that the project's findings will also contribute to the wider conversation around Human-Computer Interaction in other professions.

Role of Ghent University
Ghent University will provide the necessary training and resources for the development and completion of the project, particularly through the Language and Translation Technology Team (LT3)’s expertise and state-of-the-art user testing equipment.
Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Executive Agency (REA). Neither the European Union nor the authority can be held responsible for them.