CALPIU Research Center


CALPIU’s main research focus is the function of language in the social and cultural practices of the university, especially the significance of language choice and language proficiency within a context of power relations and hierarchies of influence, as well as the significance of power relations and hierarchies of influence vis-à-vis the organization, didactics, learning processes and academic content of educational programs in the humanities and social and natural sciences. Thus, one purpose is to further the professionalization of university education in an international context by providing basic fundamental research investigating these issues. In all industrialized countries, the language situation at universities is complex and our knowledge of this multilingual reality is rather limited, both in Denmark and world-wide. We know very little about the influence of this diversity on teaching and learning processes. Is language just a neutral tool? What difference does it make whether one uses English or one’s L1 in teaching or in student group work? How does teaching in a second language affect teacher roles? What about standards of Academic English in an ELF context? What role does the local language play for students from abroad, as compared with their L1s? How many languages does the university need? These are just some of the questions the CALPIU center seeks to address.

CALPIU was conceived with Denmark, particularly Roskilde University, as its focal ‘case’, but the Center cooperates with researchers in several European countries and beyond (Hong Kong, Japan, Australia), who share our interest in the internationalized university and the practices defining it. For more information about CALPIU, see About.

If you wish to learn more about CALPIU, please take a look around our website for more information about our current Research projects, our latest conference, CALPIU’12, or the latest News where you can also read CALPIU Newsletter 2012.


CALPIU Research Center aims to provide an organizational framework for Danish, Nordic and international cooperation for the purpose of creating a new theoretical understanding of the internationalization process which universities are undergoing. Internationalization of higher education means that both professors and students to an increasing degree come from a large number of countries and have a background in many different languages and cultures, which is assumed to affect university programs and study environments in different ways. It is generally assumed that internationalization in this context means the same as use of English, witness the Danish discourse about language in education, where many voices their fear that English might change its role from the universal contact language to the dominant language in Danish universities. Within CALPIU, it is assumed that internationalization is about the relationship between many cultures and languages within the same educational institution, and about the possibility of practicing diversity as a resource in education.

News and activities

New CALPIU volume

The "CALPIU’12 volume" will

be published by Palgrave Macmillan in July 2015.

Read more here


Description of all CALPIU related projects available here