Speaking Worlds

Mariana's blog about
interpretation and translation


2016: a year of purpose

As I sat down to my desk on the first day of the year and set out to plan the new year, I couldn't help but start by reviewing mentally the accomplishments of the year which just came to an end. In my personal business universe 2015 was a significant year, I cemented my professional practice in Europe and made new and important connections with clients who work in the areas I specialize in. My thoughts naturally extended to this field, and I made a note of the significant events that took place this year world-wide.

At the global level, 2015 is the year when the millennium development goals (MDGs) expired and when, after several years of careful consideration, the sustainable development goals (SDGs) were adopted instead. These 17 strategies expanded on their predecessors and are taking the challenge further, involving not only developing countries but the whole world into the race for development. We now have 15 years to transform the world into a more equitable and fair place, in spite of every terrible thing that is happening.


The Future is Now

Remote interpreting is not new. In the past 10 years, many interpreters have been given the chance to work online, or remotely. It has mainly involved consecutive interpreting, over the phone or on Skype. Consecutive has never been my favourite form of interpreting, since it involves allowing for pauses in the speaker's speech so that the interpreter may then repeat what has been said in the target language. Consecutive interpreting is therefore an exercise in memory, and effective note-taking. I, however, much prefer the real time or simultaneous interpreting, which remains, in my opinion, the most faithful and direct form of interpretation. Yet, how can we expect to deliver simultaneously over a phone line? The need to pause to listen to the message forces us to do consecutive work, the conversations become longer, the flow of communication is constantly interrupted and the quality of the sound – which is exceedingly important – often leaves much to be desired. All too often, remote interpreting represents a very stressful situation for everyone involved.




Mariana Hernandez, English, French and Spanish interpreter and translator My name is Mariana Hernandez; I am a freelance conference interpreter and translator working in English, French and Spanish. I was born and I grew up in Paris, France. Later in life I moved with my family to Latin America, where I eventually started my career, working with international NGOs, United Nations agencies, and private and public sector stakeholders in developing countries. This blog speaks of my work, and the many humanist topics which are close to my heart.



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