Language Laboratory & Digitization Studio

Late Fabian B.L. Colaco and Smt. Alice Colaco World Institute of Konkani Language (Vishwa Konkani Bhasha Samsthan), established by World Konkani Centre in the year 2010, strives to promote research in the areas of Konkani Language, Culture, Social Studies, Literature, History etc. Since its inception the Institute has initiated projects and activities on several desciplines. The Institute has setup state of the art Language Laboratory and a Digitisation Studio in its premises.


Projects & Programmes

Dialect Survey of Konkani

The Konkani Language is rich in linguistic and cultural heritage constituted by its host of speech varieties. It is estimated that more than 30 speech varieties in Konkani exist in the west coast of India consisting of Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra and Gujarath states. It is considered by scholars of linguistics that a survey of these speech varieties will afford broad points of reference for linguistic studies in Konkani of a more comprehensive nature.

World Institute of Konkani Language has completed a Pilot Project in this connection to document the Kudubi Dialect of Karnataka by Eminent Linguist Dr. Varija N. A monograph on the dialect has been compiled and submitted by the scholar which is under publication. A series of Workshops to document some of the dialects of Konkani Language with the technical guidance and scholarly help of Western Regional Languages Centre of Central Institute of Indian Languages (CIIL) Pune has been conducted, the efforts will be continued to award linguistic projects to qualified linguists.  The Survey will aim to document the dialects by compiling 1300 words of Basic Core Vocabulory, 250 sentences and a story pertaining to each Dialect. Further the Linguists will be assigned to analyse the language variety and produce a monograph on Descriptive Study of the dialect.

Socio Economic Surveys of Konkani Communities

Working within the main efforts of World Konkani Centre as emphasised in its VISION TVM, in empowering Konkani Speaking Communities, main goal is to help communities to prepare a blue print for developmental roadmap having culture at the heart of it. Socio Economic Survey of Konkani Communities is a important step in this direction.

The Surveys are being conducted in a participative method. The process includes a series of Capacity Building Programmes for the volunteers from the community in field methods. The Questionnaire is pre tested and fieldworkers will interview the families of Konkani Community. The volunteers are also further trained in basic Computer usage and given the task of Compiling the Data.

Resolving the Issue of Usage of Multiple Scripts for Konkani

For many Historical and Socio-Cultural reasons, Konkani people have been using five different scripts (Devanagari, Romi, Kannada, Malayalam and Perso-Arabic) to write in Konkani Language. Due to this Konkani Literature has been divided into several script groups and not intelligible in entirety to every Konkani person. This situation has become an obstacle to a free-flow of Konkani literature from one region to another. World Konkani Centre worked on this issue with the help of technology and embarked on the project to develop an AUTOMATIC SCRIPT CONVERTER, KONKANVERTER is result of this project.

The Institute has developed a finite state transducer based transliteration engine that performs statistical machine transliteration between three major scripts used to write the Konkani language. The development of KONKANVERTER has been achieved with active collaboration of Software Developer and Language Experts.

Digitisation of Manuscripts and Books

WIKL has setup a modern Digitisation units in World Konkani Centre for developing a fullfledged digital archives. The World Konkani Archives is under development and books and manuscripts are being digitised and saved using Repository software. WIKL has also setup a Digitisation unit at Xavier Centre for Historical Research, Goa for digitisation of 17th century Mhamai Kamat Records. WIKL aims to digitise Konkani books published in last 100 years and make available online in a due course of time.

Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage

Intangible Cultural Heritage incorporates the knowledge, skills and practices that communities or individuals recognize as part of their unique identity. It promotes cultural diversities and human creativity. This heritage, passed down orally from generation to generation, is constantly evolving and being recreated in response to the environment. In order to strengthen the capacity for safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) and enhance awareness and participation of Konkani speaking communities as defined in the 2003 UNESCO Convention on ICH, World Konkani Centre has initiated an important project in the year 2015.

Since then WIKL has worked on various aspects of the subject, including documentation in tribal areas and holding an important National seminar on community based inventory of ICH etc. The National Level workshop was organized by World Konkani Centre on 8th February 2015 in association with State Konkani Academies of Goa, Karnataka and Kerala, Goa University and Mangalore University. The Workshop was supported by Department of Kannada and Culture, Government of Karnataka. The Project has been taken forward with this National Seminar, to build awareness among the communities to takeup community based inventorying of their Intangible Cultural Heritage elements.