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Translating Global Dialogue into Indonesian

February 17, 2017

In April 2015 a group of Indonesian sociologists formed the Indonesian editorial team. Dialog Global Volume 5 Issue 3, the first Indonesian language edition of Global Dialogue (GD) and its 16th language at the time, was published in September 2015.

The team comprises nine sociologists attached to five different universities in four cities: University of Indonesia at Depok, Gadjah Mada University and Sanata Dharma University at Yogyakarta, Bogor Institute of Agriculture at Bogor, and Nusa Cendana University at Kupang. Four members are currently doctoral candidates at the Australian National University, the in Paris, the University of Amsterdam, and Leiden University.

Three members constitute the editorial board in charge of peer-reviewing translated articles. Board members also take part in the translation of articles, especially during periods when the number of available translators happens to be limited, and they conduct peer reviews of each other’s translations. In addition, one board member functions as the board’s editor-in-chief, a second member acts as the board’s liaison with team members involved in the translation of articles, while a third board member works in liaison with the GD managerial team. A college graduate assists the board in editing, designing, and composing GD in Indonesian.

One month before the ISA publishes GD, the editorial board invites each team member to translate one or two articles, depending on his or her availability. Because of the distances between the members’ universities – ranging from 65 to 2,770 kilometers – all communications are conducted via e-mail or social media.

The challenges facing the Indonesian team in the translation process are more or less the same as those experienced by the Romanian editorial team as described in GD6.3 (September 2016). Besides basic structural differences between the English and Indonesian languages, many basic concepts in the social sciences, especially the most recent ones, have not yet been formally translated so many academics tend to leave basic concepts in English untranslated. Apart from browsing through dictionaries and academic as well as professional publications, and discussing specific translation issues among ourselves, board members sometimes have to consult related professionals and, on occasion, seek clarification from authors of the GD articles being translated.

After peer-reviewing all translated articles including their own and communicating with each other to solve outstanding translation issues, board members move on to the layout stage. Steps are taken to ensure that GD has been translated and composed in accordance with ISA guidelines, before the final draft is submitted to the editor of Global Dialogue.

Following the publication of Global Dialogue on the ISA website, the board sends the GD link to the Indonesian Sociological Association (ISI), the Association of Indonesian Sociology Study Programs (APSSI), various sociology departments and study programs, libraries, research centers, sociology student associations, and individual sociologists from various universities.

Kamanto Sunarto, University of Indonesia, Depok, Indonesia <kamantos@yahoo.com>

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