Threlford Memorial Lecture: Psychological Capital and Sustainability in the Language Professions

Hubscher-Davidson, Severine (2021). Threlford Memorial Lecture: Psychological Capital and Sustainability in the Language Professions. In: CIOL Online Conference 2021, 11-13 Mar 2021, [Online].

Abstract

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) published in 2016 aimed to create a people-centred and aspirational development agenda. Of particular relevance to the language professions, are the third and eighth SDG goals which promote well-being and decent work, alongside economic growth. Taking care of one’s physical and mental health has thus become a key concern for working professionals. This is no easy task, however, in today’s competitive business environment where occupational stressors are rife. To maintain their psychological health, linguists need to be able to draw on—and optimize—their personal resources, a process problematized in terms of psychological capital in the organizational literature. Indeed, linguists’ psychological resources can be viewed as a kind of ‘capital’ that can lead to successful performance and competitive advantage in the workplace, alongside their intellectual, social, and cultural resources. In this lecture, the concept of psychological capital will be introduced and illustrated as a powerful tool that can affect linguists in the workplace. Combining psychological research and the stories of professional translators, I will explore the value of this concept for the sustainability of the language professions.

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