Market demand for conference interpreting in South Korea: Sifting through the signals

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Abstract

This paper explores the market demand for conference interpreting in South Korea by examining the signals that users perceive as important for professional conference interpreting services. The findings are based on a questionnaire-based survey of 109 participants who have experience using conference interpreting services. The results indicate that quality of interpreting, domain-specific interpreting experience, and certification of interpreting competence are important signals, suggesting that users are aware of the importance of quality. However, academic degrees in interpreting are found to have relatively weaker signaling power, suggesting the presence of information asymmetry-meaning users have less information about interpreters' qualifications than suppliers do. The findings are discussed in relation to users' price perceptions. The paper also addresses the service aspect of conference interpreting, shedding light on the “interpreting as a service” approach, based on an end-to-end service concept in both training and practice. The findings suggest future directions both in terms of market development and interpreter training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-100
Number of pages30
JournalTranslation and Interpreting
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Ewha Womans University Research Grant of 2018.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 University of Western Sydneys. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Certification
  • Conference interpreting
  • Interpreting quality
  • Market demand
  • Signaling
  • Signals

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