Sue Wright has been Professor of Language and Politics at the University of Portsmouth since 2006 and was Director of the Centre for European and International Studies Research 2008-9. Her slightly unusual professorial title stems from her research in language policy from the 1980s onwards. Very early on it became clear to her that this has to be interdisciplinary work and that linguists who want to examine subjects such as the role of language in nation building, the problems associated with language rights for minority groups and issues of communication in globalisation need a clear understanding of the political contexts. Her field work has covered minority language issues in the south of France, problems of communication in the European parliament and transnational communication on the Internet. Her theoretical work has addressed language issues in local, national, supranational and international settings.

Her current interest is in the role that language plays in inclusion and exclusion. She is a member of Amartya Sen's international panel on social progress. She is the PI of the Portsmouth research project on the language of inclusion and exclusion in citizen science. She is completing contributions to the Sage Handbook of Migration on the role of language in incorporation. She has just finished a major rewrite of her 2004 book, Language Policy and Language Planning, and the second edition will appear in spring 2016.

She is editor (with Ulrich Ammon and Jeroen Darquennes) of the journal Sociolinguistica and (with Helen Kelly Holmes) of the Palgrave book series Language and Globalisation. She is a board member of a number of journals and referees for a number of publishers.

Research Interests

Research Clusters

  • Language across Borders

Discipline Areas

  • Linguistics
  • Politics
  • History