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Languages, Cultures and LinguisticsPart of Humanities

Professor Jennifer Jenkins BA, DipTEFLA, PhD, FAcSS

Emeritus Professor of Global Englishes

Professor Jennifer Jenkins's photo

Until my retirement at the end of 2019, I was Chair of Global Englishes and Founding Director of the Centre for Global Englishes in the department of Modern Languages and Linguistics. Before taking up her post at the University of Southampton, I worked at King's College London, where I designed and directed a Masters in ELT and Applied Linguistics. From the late 1980s, I was the first to empirically research the phenomenon of English as a Lingua Franca, initially for my PhD (1995), subsequently for numerous publications, and I continue to do so. I have been – and remain – on the boards of several international journals, was Reviews Editor of the International Journal of Applied Linguistics from 2004 through 2009, and was a founding editor of the Journal of English as a Lingua Franca (JELF). I was also the founding editor of the book series Developments in English as a Lingua Franca (DeGruyter Mouton), which I co-edit with Will Baker. In 2014 I was appointed Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Research interests

My research interests have always been in Global Englishes in general and English as a Lingua Franca (ELF) in particular. Early projects included investigations into intelligibility and accommodation in English lingua franca communication (see 2000 monograph), and attitudes and identities towards and among ELF users (see 2007 monograph). My research interests then turned to English language policy in higher education, focusing on the implications of the spread of English and use of ELF in English medium universities in both native and non-native-English-speaking countries, and problems relating to the use of native-English-oriented tests to assess the English of users from diverse first languages (see 2014 monograph). As well as this, I have worked on reconceptualising ELF in line with growing evidence of its use, and more recently have been exploring ELF in relation to issues of empowerment/disempowerment and social justice.

Last collaborative research project

Co-director of Linguistic Diversity on the EMI Campus
This collaborative project (2014-2017) funded by the Universities of Southampton (Diamond Jubliee Fellowship) and Helsinki, and led by Jennifer Jenkins at Southampton and Anna Mauranen at Helsinki, explored orientations to English language use within universities that describe themselves as 'international' or 'global'. The focus was on staff and student (international and home) perspectives on English language use and requirements (including entry requirements). The data enabled us to draw cross-university comparisons and contrasts in both native and non-native English contexts, as well as broader conclusions about the nature of internationalization on the campuses involved. In addition to research teams at the universities of Southampton and Helsinki, the project included teams at Monash University (Australia), Shantou University (China), the University of Sienna (Italy), the University of Malaya (Malaysia), Waseda University (Japan), Vrije University (Netherlands), and the University of Saragossa (Spain). The project was published in a volume edited by Jenkins and Mauranen in 2019.

Recent keynotes, plenaries and invited talks

Convenor of colloquium 'ELF and dis/empowerment in educational settings', 11th International Conference of English as a Lingua Franca, London, July 2018.

'Time for an end to standardized English language tests.' Keynote talk given at the Newton/British Council Workshop, English as an ASEAN lingua franca: Implications for language education policy and practice, Bangkok, January 2018.

‘English as a Lingua Franca for healthcare’. Keynote talk at the ‘English for Healthcare’ biannual conference, Bern, Switzerland, October 2017.

‘English as a Lingua Franca. Past, present, and future’. Plenary talk at the seminar ‘Using and Uses of English’, Helsinki, September 2017.

Convenor of workshop, ‘After all that, what do we know – and what do we still need to know? Findings from “Linguistic diversity on the international campus” ’ (Southampton-Helsinki Diamond Jubilee Fellowship project, 2014-17), Helsinki, June 2017.

‘ELF and WE: unity in diversity’. Invited talk in the colloquium ‘ELF at 10: impact and influence on related disciplines and scholarship’, 11th International Conference of English as a Lingua Franca, Helsinki, June 2017.

‘Multilingual and multicultural perspectives on the third ELF eye’. Convenor of invited symposium at the 9th International English as a Lingua Franca conference, Lleida, Spain, 27-29 June 2016. 

‘English as a Lingua Franca: Past, present and (possible) future’. Invited talk, University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, 22 February 2016.

'English in the 21st Century'. Annual Richard Hoggart Lecture, Goldsmith, University of London, November 2015.

'Seeing the world through three ELF eyes'. Keynote presentation at the 8th International Conference of English as a Lingua Franca, Beijing, August 2015.

‘(Re)theorising ELF: from revolution to evolution’. BAAL/CUP conference (De)Constructing Englishes. Exploring the implications of ontologies of the language for learning, teaching, and assessment. York St John University, June 2015. 

'How good are their intercultural communication skills? International students cast judgement on home students and staff. Intercultural Connections Conference, Southampton, April 2015.

Invited plenary speaker at the 2015, plenary at the 2015 Language Training & Testing Center International conference, ‘Critical Reflections on Foreign Language Education: Globalization and Local Interventions’, Taipei, April 2015.

‘Internationalisation on campus – or is it?’ Plenary talk in the 50th Anniversary series, Department of Applied Linguistics, Birkbeck College, University of London, March 2015.

‘Diverse Englishes, intercultural communication, and international universities’. Fourth Annual Distinguished Lecture, Centre for Language Education Research, Aston University, February 2015.

Invited convener of half-day workshop, ‘ELF in Higher Education’, at the 7th International ELF Conference. Athens, September 2014. 

‘The paradox(es) of English in Higher Education’. Invited plenary, LLAS, UCML, AULC Conference, Southampton, July 2014.

Invited presentation, ‘Fit for purpose? Tests of English for entry into international universities’, University of Helsinki, May 2014.

Invited speaker with Dutch journalist on ‘Global Englishes and Global Journalism’, Vrije University, Amsterdam, April 2014.

Invited speaker on British Council Signature Event. ‘English Medium Instruction: Cure or Curse?” at the 48th International IATEFL Conference, Harrogate, April 2014.

‘English, the elephant in the (international university) room’. Invited talk at the University of Bath, March 2013.

‘The globalisation of higher education. But what about its lingua franca?’ Invited plenary talk at the 3rd Waseda ELF International Workshop, Tokyo, February 2014.

Invited convener of colloquium, ‘ELF and EMI’, at the 6th International ELF conference, Rome, September 2013.

‘National English for international univeresities. How paradoxical!’. Invited plenary presentation at the 1st Changing English Conference, Helsinki, June 2013.

‘Academic English in the ‘international’ university. Why so national?’. Invited plenary talk at the Global Englishes Event, Edinburgh Applied Language Seminars, University of Edinburgh, May 2013.

Plenary address, Annual Postgraduate Conference, University of Warwick, UK, June 2011.

Invited member of plenary panel at the 4th International ELF Conference, Hong Kong, May 2011.

‘English as a Lingua Franca: Challenging the ‘standard’. Plenary address at the 45th Annual TESOL Convention, New Orleans, March 2011.

Speaker (alongside David Crystal and Jane Setter) in a video exhibit at the ‘Evolving English’ exhibition, British Library, London, November 2010-March 2011.

Convenor of Thematic Panel on English as a Lingua Franca in Europe, and presenter of paper ‘The international university as a transnational space: implications for language policy’ on Thematic Panel ‘English as a Lingua Franca: negotiating transnational space in academic communities of practice’, Sociolinguistics Symposium 18, Southampton September 2010.

‘ELF as facilitator of European diversity and integration’. Talk as part of invited panel, ‘English as a Lingua Franca in and of Multilingual Europe’, convened and chaired by J. Jenkins at the LINEE conference, New Challenges for Multilingualism in Europe, Dubrovnik, Croatia, 11-15 April 2010.

‘English in the world: a reality check’. Keynote paper at the ELLSIIR (English Language and Literature Studies: Image, Identity, Reality) international conference, Belgrade, December 2009.

'Global challenges to standard/'standard' English policy and practice'. Keynote paper at the Irish Association of Applied Linguistics international conference, Language Policy and Language Learning: New challenges and paradigms, Limerick, June 2009.

‘ELF and the international university’. Keynote paper at the Annual International CALPIU (Cultural and Linguistic Practices in the International University) Conference, Roskilde, December 2008.

‘English as a Lingua Franca: a more relevant approach to English education in Japan?’. Keynote paper at the 47th JACET Convention, Tokyo, September 2008.

‘European ELF: attitude and identity’. Invited paper in the symposium ‘Reconciling multilingualism with English as a lingua franca: realistic policy or wishful thinking?’ at the 15th World Congress of Applied Linguistics (AILA), Essen, August 2008.

‘ELF or ENL for English-medium universities?’, invited colloquium paper at the international conference Language Issues in English-medium Universities, University of Hong Kong, June 2008.

‘Does English as a Lingua Franca have relevance for English teaching in Hong Kong?’. Plenary paper at the inaugural roundtable of the Research Centre into Language Education in Multilingual Societies, ‘The respective roles of English and local languages’, Hong Kong Institute of Education, June 2008.

‘(Un)pleasant? (in)correct? (un)intelligible? ELF speakers’ perceptions of their accents. Opening keynote paper at the First International Conference of English as a Lingua Franca, Helsinki, March 2008.

‘ELF still at the gate: attitudes towards English as a Lingua Franca’. Keynote paper at the International Conference on Global English. Verona, February 2008.

‘The changing face of English’. Opening keynote paper at the 24th Annual Conference of ETAS (English Teachers’ Association of Switzerland), Lugano, January 2008.

‘English as a Lingua Franca: interpretations and attitudes’. Invited talk at the 13th Annual Conference of the International Association of World Englishes, Regensburg, October 2007.

‘EAP as an academic lingua franca’. Closing plenary at the annual BALEAP conference, Durham, April 2007.

‘The English language learner as learner of English as a Lingua Franca’. Invited paper in Spotlight Session ‘Reconceptualizing the contemporary English language learner’, 41st Annual TESOL Convention, Seattle, March 2007.

‘English as a Lingua Franca: which English, why, and who for?’. Keynote paper at the Association for Terminology and Lexicography annual conference, Guildford, January 2007.

Conference and Research Group organisation

Organiser of the Centre for Global Englishes PhD conference, ‘Global Englishes’, Southampton, June 2016.

Co-organiser of the 2009 2nd International English as a Lingua Franca Conference

Director of the Centre for Global Englishes (CGE), which was established in 2010. It produces and disseminates research on the linguistic and sociocultural dimensions of global uses and users of English (Global Englishes), and on English as a Lingua Franca in particular.


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Although officially retired, I continue to co-supervise four PhD students and to remain in close contact with the Centre for Global Englishes and its members.

Professor Jennifer Jenkins
I can be contacted via my University email address:

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