The Special Research Programme (SFB) ‘German in Austria: Variation – Contact - Perception’ is a project financed by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF F60). Its nine project parts are collaboratively conducting research into the variation and change of the German language in Austria. The SFB is exploring the use and the subjective perception of the German language in Austria as well as its contact with other languages. The project is institutionally situated at four academic institutions in Austria: the University of Vienna, the University of Salzburg, the University of Graz and the Austrian Academy of Sciences.
The project’s findings will be analysed from the perspective of different – mostly linguistic – disciplines. Specifically, these analyses will look at the geographic distribution, the distinct regional and contact linguistic features, the change in language over time, and the social and situational factors that affect the use and spread of the different manifestations of German language in Austria.
With regard to this interdisciplinary approach, the project focuses its efforts around two central tasks:
On the one hand, comprehensive and detailed analyses of German in Austria are being prepared by research groups from the fields of sociolinguistics, dialect research, multilingualism research and computer linguistics, to name a few. This creates a broad spectrum of linguistic expertise which can do justice to the complexity of the key topics involved in language variation in Austria. On the other hand, the data which has been collected and prepared will be made available to researches as well as the interested public through an online research platform.
The SFB is comprised of nine project parts (PP) that are assigned to different task clusters. The following table provides an overview of the project’s structure; more information about each of the task clusters and project parts can be found on the linked pages.