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The Bridge to the World: Conference Interpreting

by sinthee

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With the need of international understanding, world leaders have thought of making use of global conferences. During such event, people of different backgrounds come to represent their culture and speak in different languages. This is how translators found themselves working as conference interpreters.

Conference interpreting has become such an essential practice during international summits, professional seminars, multilateral meetings of world leaders and corporate representatives, and even international beauty pageants. In famous conference places like Germany, Japan, andSingapore, translation services are much needed.

In international conferences, various kinds of interpreting takes place. Organizers often seek the help of atranslation agency while the delegates themselves bring with them their own interpreters. The following are some common practices in international conference interpreting:



Currently the most used style during international conferences, simultaneous interpreting is done while the speaker is delivering his speech. With the use of a sound proofed booth, the interpreter hears the speaker’s speech through the headset and then almost simultaneously speaks in the provided microphone for the rest of the delegates to hear. With various interpreters speaking different languages, the delegates can select their desired language through relevant channels.



Interpretation happens after the speaker has finished delivering his speech. Through the aid of notes or an original copy of the speech, the interpreter listens, translates and delivers the speech into the language of his audience. This is usually done during highly technical meetings and small group discussions.



Much like the first interpretation practice, whispering into another language is done while the speaker is delivering the speech. This is well-suited in conferences with only a few delegates sitting close together such as in bilateral meetings.



International delegates often understand one another. But in order to provide better understanding, they resort to getting the help of interpreters to speak up for them. This is usually done with a team of interpreters.


With the help of conference interpreters, harmony among various cultures is achieved.


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