Read the news item about the event: Translation as Collaboration: Translaboration? 

'Translation' has become a widely used metaphor within and across disciplines to describe the processes by which knowledge is generated, shared and applied. 'Collaboration', as an allied and equally widely applied notion, raises questions of power, degrees of equality of participation and mutuality of influence as intrinsic values of practice. The two terms complement each other. This one-day symposium, convened by the cross-disciplinary TRANSlaborate research group at the University of Westminster, explores the conceptual potential inherent in aligning the notions of collaboration and translation in both theory and practice. Asking what kinds of 'translation models answer questions about the energy needed if ideas or objects are to move around' (Czarniawsksa, 2001) and looking to scrutinise the wider issues and limits that arise from a coming together of the concepts of translation and collaboration, this symposium investigates the paradigm of translation as collaboration, or 'translaboration'.

In keeping with the spirit of the symposium as a collaborative space, this symposium brings together speakers and delegates from a wide range of disciplines to address questions of 'translaboration’ as a model for the production, transmission and reception of knowledge, as a site for the articulation of agency and affect, and as a model of the distribution of (textual) power, between communities and individuals of different cultures, including different disciplinary cultures. Very much conceived as a microcosm of translational collaboration in action, the symposium not least also aims to further interest and debate in conceptualising 'interdisciplinarity' and 'transdisciplinarity' as potential translation issues in and of themselves (Bachmann-Medick, 2009). By emphasising collaboration as not only inherent in all translational activity, but as a potential linchpin upon which translational action rests or indeed turns, we hope to generate discussion of translation as an interdisciplinary critical practice that posits translational collaboration as a central force of transformation and productive (dis)continuity in a wide variety of cultural and institutional contexts.

The symposium will be an opportunity for colleagues across disciplines, including translation, literary and cultural studies, legal studies, medicine and life-sciences, education and professional development, leadership and management, and action and change research to explore the strengths and weaknesses of emerging translational paradigms, to test and assess their premises and (trans-)disciplinary implications, and to forge greater connections for further research projects around 'translaboration' as a category of analysis in a variety of disciplines.

Confirmed Speakers

Confirmed speakers include Cornelia Zwischenberger (Vienna), Simon Lee-Price (Buckinghamshire), Jane Hendry (Surrey), Sarah Bowman-Roberts (London), Laura Santini (Genoa) Juozas Valciukas (Lithuania), Marco Sonzogni (Wellington, NZ), Ros Schwartz (London), Claudio Tedesco (London) and Robert Chandler (London) among others.

Event programme

Download the Translaboration event programme (PDF format).


Please register online


  • Alexa Alfer, Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Westminster
  • Steven Cranfield, Department of Leadership and Professional Development, University of Westminster
  • Paresh Kathrani, Westminster Law School, University of Westminster