Joint Research Projects

Archiving Fieldwork Materials of the Ainu Language: an Interdisciplinary Research (2018.04-2021.03)


About the Project

Project term: April, 2018–March, 2021

While recording new material through fieldwork remains important for linguistics, archiving the material of former researchers is becoming an increasingly important task for research on so-called endangered languages, not only for the research itself but also for the language-maintenance activities of the language communities. Tasks in such archiving projects vary widely: duplication and preservation of various types of media; description and documentation of linguistic/ethnographic materials; reconstruction of the relationship among materials and documents, e.g., tape recordings, photographs, and field notes; publishing properly documented materials for both specialists and learners; and maintaining relationships with consultants and their relatives. This research project, focusing on Ainu, the language of the indigenous people of northern Japan, aims to reinterpret fieldwork materials recorded by a researcher over the course of a 50-plus-year period through a three-year discussion of the problems and solutions in the process of archiving such materials: “Researcher Archives”.

Osami OKUDA, Project Coordinator (Professor, Sapporo Gakuin University)

For details, please see here