Are you interested in names and new words? Keen to find out more about dialects or folk traditions? Do you need help with points of language, have questions about Sweden’s Language Act, or want to know more about the country’s minority languages?
We are a Swedish government agency with a focus on dialects, language policy, language planning, names and folklore. In these different areas, we conduct research, give lectures, answer questions and provide advice, and produce a range of publications.
The Institute’s collections, which document major components of Sweden’s intangible cultural heritage, are open to members of the public, students and researchers. The Institute for Language and Folklore has offices in Uppsala, Stockholm and Göteborg.
The Institute has extensive collections of dialect transcriptions and recordings. We are currently working on two dialect dictionaries, a textbook on Swedish dialects, and a database covering the dialects of southern and western Sweden. On our website, you can for example hear recordings of different dialects of Swedish.
The Institute holds the country’s largest collections of folk traditions. Our archives contain the results of over a hundred years’ work documenting popular culture: stories of people’s lives – from everyday concerns to high days and holidays, and from the fishing and farming communities of the 19th century to today’s multicultural society.
The Institute also has collections of the names used in Sweden from the earliest times to the present day, with information about their meanings, spelling and pronunciation.
We publish databases, registers and dictionaries of personal names and place-names. As a government agency, our role also includes giving opinions on appropriate forms of place-names and in connection with the registration of personal names.
The Language Council of Sweden, which is a department of the Institute, is responsible for language planning, or ‘language cultivation’, in the country. We are concerned in particular with Swedish, Swedish Sign Language and the national minority languages (with the exception of the Sami languages, cultivation of which is the responsibility of the Sami Parliament).
The Council analyses the language situation in society, monitors implementation of the Language Act, and encourages the use of plain language by public agencies.