Information economics, the translation profession and translator certification

Research output: Other contributionThesis/DissertationResearch

Abstract

This research uses the framework of information economics to analyze the translation profession and translator certification. The translation market is found to be heterogeneous and fragmented and both buyers and sellers frequently enter and exit the market. The recruiters seeking translators surveyed believe translator certification can enhance the overall image of the translation profession but increased monetary benefits might be minimal. There are two reasons why currently translator certification systems do not function effectively as a signal. First, because of "counter-signaling", high-quality translators may have less incentive to use certification because signaling behavior may mark them down as mediocre translators. Second, due to "signal-jamming", vocational master's degrees in Translation are likely to compete with translator certification as a signaling device, and employers find it difficult to make inference about job applicants' employability from these two credentials. As recommendations, professional translator associations, translator training institutions and others need to collaborate in developing multilateral signaling devices as well as provide translators with the required knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for them to thrive in the ever-changing translation market.
Original languageEnglish
TypeDoctoral dissertation
PublisherRovira i Virgili University
Place of PublicationSpain
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

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information economics
translator
certification
profession
market
employability
applicant
employer
incentive

Cite this

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title = "Information economics, the translation profession and translator certification",
abstract = "This research uses the framework of information economics to analyze the translation profession and translator certification. The translation market is found to be heterogeneous and fragmented and both buyers and sellers frequently enter and exit the market. The recruiters seeking translators surveyed believe translator certification can enhance the overall image of the translation profession but increased monetary benefits might be minimal. There are two reasons why currently translator certification systems do not function effectively as a signal. First, because of {"}counter-signaling{"}, high-quality translators may have less incentive to use certification because signaling behavior may mark them down as mediocre translators. Second, due to {"}signal-jamming{"}, vocational master's degrees in Translation are likely to compete with translator certification as a signaling device, and employers find it difficult to make inference about job applicants' employability from these two credentials. As recommendations, professional translator associations, translator training institutions and others need to collaborate in developing multilateral signaling devices as well as provide translators with the required knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for them to thrive in the ever-changing translation market.",
author = "CHAN, {Lung Jan}",
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publisher = "Rovira i Virgili University",
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Information economics, the translation profession and translator certification. / CHAN, Lung Jan.

Spain : Rovira i Virgili University. 2008, Doctoral dissertation.

Research output: Other contributionThesis/DissertationResearch

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AB - This research uses the framework of information economics to analyze the translation profession and translator certification. The translation market is found to be heterogeneous and fragmented and both buyers and sellers frequently enter and exit the market. The recruiters seeking translators surveyed believe translator certification can enhance the overall image of the translation profession but increased monetary benefits might be minimal. There are two reasons why currently translator certification systems do not function effectively as a signal. First, because of "counter-signaling", high-quality translators may have less incentive to use certification because signaling behavior may mark them down as mediocre translators. Second, due to "signal-jamming", vocational master's degrees in Translation are likely to compete with translator certification as a signaling device, and employers find it difficult to make inference about job applicants' employability from these two credentials. As recommendations, professional translator associations, translator training institutions and others need to collaborate in developing multilateral signaling devices as well as provide translators with the required knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for them to thrive in the ever-changing translation market.

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