Ecological Perspectives on Language Endangerment
Ecological Perspectives on Language Endangerment
Ecological Perspectives on Language Endangerment

Last updated on 2017-10-25

About the Book

This volume contains the proceedings of a symposium that took place during the 2011 annual meeting of the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL) in Chicago, Illinois. The purpose of the symposium was to present the Sustainable Use Model for Language Development (SUM) and, in particular, to demonstrate the application of the Expanded Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale (EGIDS) as a means of describing language ecologies in different parts of the world.

The book consists of 3 introductory chapters which give an overview of the Sustainable Use Model. Chapter 1 (Lewis), gives a general overview. Chapter 2 (Simons) gives a more detailed description of the EGIDS and the FAMED conditions and includes an EGIDS evaluation tool as an appendix. Chapter 3 (Karan, forthcoming) provides an explanation of the Perceived Benefit Model which serves as the basis for the SUM's description of Motivation, one of the FAMED conditions. These foundational chapters are followed by four cases studies in which the language ecologies of Brazil (Anonby, Chp. 4), Bangladesh (Kim, Chp. 5), Democratic Republic of Congo (Bagamba and Boone, Chp. 6) and Malaysia (Lewis, Moody and Rose, Chp. 7) are described by using the EGIDS to develop a profile of language vitality in each country. A final chapter, (Quakenbush, Chp. 8) summarizes the lessons learned from these case studies. 

About the Editors

M. Paul Lewis
M. Paul Lewis

M. Paul Lewis served as general editor of Ethnologue: Languages of the World from 2004 to 2016, and is a Senior Consultant in Sociolinguistics with SIL International. His primary research and publication interests are in language maintenance, shift and death, language policy and planning, and language documentation. He has authored, co-authored, or edited more than 50 publications. Along with Gary F. Simons, he is a developer of the Expanded Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale (EGIDS) and the Sustainable Use Model (SUM). Beyond his duties as general editor of the Ethnologue (, he has primarily done research, consulting and training in sociolinguistics with SIL International in Africa, Australia, Asia, Central America, Europe and North America.

Gary F. Simons
Gary F. Simons, Editors

Gary F. Simons is the Chief Research Officer for SIL International (Dallas, TX) and Executive Editor of the Ethnologue ( He is also Adjunct Professor of Applied Linguistics at the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (Dallas, TX). Early in his career he was involved in language development activities in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands.  More recently he has contributed to the development of cyberinfrastructure for linguistics as co-founder of the Open Language Archives Community ( and co-developer of the ISO 639-3 standard of three-letter identifiers for all known languages of the world ( He holds a PhD in general linguistics (with minor emphases in computer science and classics) from Cornell University. He is an author or editor of over 100 publications (

About the Publisher

This book is published on Leanpub by Pike Center

Pike Center for Integrative Scholarship is an initiative of SIL International that builds capacity for language development through scholarship. SIL works alongside ethnolinguistic communities as they discover how language development addresses the challenging areas of their daily lives—social, cultural, political, economic and spiritual.

One of Pike Center’s strategies for building capacity is to grow the needed bodies of knowledge through its Agile Publishing program. We are using this lean publishing platform to give our affiliated scholars a platform for developing and refining new contributions to growing bodies of knowledge that support the language development movement. Many of our titles are still in a preliminary stage of development. Others are finished but have such a narrow audience that we have not elected to turn them into print books. Still others have reached the maturity of becoming a print book; in such cases, this is indicated by a link on the landing page for the book.

All of the revenues generated through sales on this site are directed to the Pike Center to support the on-going research activities of its affiliated scholars. Naming a higher price when you purchase one of our books is a way of contributing to this cause. Or you may go to the Pike Center website to make a donation that will receive a tax-deductible receipt.

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