Collaborative translation: approaches and perspectives

Head: Francesco Laurenti

Year 2021

Collaborative translation can take a multitude of forms, many of which have not yet been explored, and a new awareness in this regard could lead today to "re-exploring" issues such as the notion of text and the relationship between the aesthetic aspects and the communicational purposes of a translation; the plurality of possible interpretations of a text and the questioning of the notion of the "unique" translator; the status of the translator's voice and the concept of authorship; the notions of "know-how" and "knowledge" in relation to the figure of the translator.

These are a few aspects that, when explored through the lens of collaboration, can be useful in understanding, and possibly addressing, recent perspectives generated by new workspaces modified by technology.

Translation studies research on collaborative translations throughout history could in fact contribute to a better understanding of the different processes and practices in today's global translation market. An understanding of the intrinsic plurality that has characterized the practice of translation since its origins is now crucial to interpret, and possibly direct, the "collaborative turn" that lies behind certain translation flows on a global scale.

Comprehensive investigations into plural practices of translation, which have tended to be isolated in translation histories for a long time, have only recently begun to show a nascent interest in certain shared activities. But collaborative translation remains the subject of an investigation that has been repeatedly hoped for rather than initiated.

Today, the global language market requires that the division of translation work be reshaped, and although many agencies still retain the three consecutive steps of translation, editing and proofreading, this model will have to give way to the work of “communities” of translators in the near future.

An alternative model already partially adopted by some of the major international translation agencies is the one defined with the acronym PCTP: "Plan", "Coordinate", "Translate" and "Publish" (Beninatto and De Palma). In practice, this involves the use of "communities" of translators working together on a given project with technological tools that offer the possibility of managing translations through web-based gateways and that allow collaboration through a series of modules capable of optimizing productivity.

The impact that the advent of new technologies has had on translation practices has been profound and has contributed to changing some of them towards a collaboration that is facilitated by the participatory and interactive nature of the web.

These changes raise new questions about these practices, as it is not even clear nowadays how widespread they are.

It is important to understand, and accept, that it will soon be too reductive to speak generically of a “translator” and that we must instead think of the translator's work as the work of a team made up of team managers and heads of unit, team coordinators and terminologists, supervising consultants and experts who will respond in real time to translators’ doubts.

In such a scenario, translators will need to be able to gain acceptance from the “communities” they will be working with in translation projects and will only work if they accept and are ready to collaborate with them.

One of the main features of this research is the interdisciplinary approach organically organised with reference to the field of investigation.

All participants in the research group are scholars from specific disciplines with a common interest in translation practice.

The research will be developed according to the following perspectives of investigation (which can potentially be integrated with others during the research).

The participants in the research will share the investigation of some of the following areas: 

  • Multilingual texts (as a form of collaboration)
  • Collaborative translations in history
  • Author-translator collaborative translations
  • Collaboration and new technologies
  • Collaborative editorial translation and proofreading (translators, editors, proofreaders)
  • Specialist technical translation teams (clients, project managers, terminologists, translators, etc.)
  • “Schools” of translation and collaboration (Bagdad School, Salerno School, Toledo School, etc.)
  • Translation “pairs” and co-translation
  • “Team” translations and co-translations
  • Retranslation as a form of co-translation
  • Translations from bridge languages as a form of collaboration
  • Translation workshops and collaborative translations
  • Collaborative translation and new technologies (crowdsourcing)
  • Human translator/technology "collaboration"
  • Theory of collaborative translation and translation studies
  • Audiovisual translation and collaboration
  • Oral translation (interpretation) and collaboration
  • Funsubbing and collaboration
  • Socialnetworks and collaborative translation
  • Intersemiotic translation and author-translator collaboration
  • Theatrical translations and collaboration
  • Teamwork and specialist translation
  • Translator communities and minority languages
  • Future perspectives of collaborative translation

The methodological approaches and the disciplinary differentiation of the scientific fields involved are intended to be an added value for the achievement of the Research.



The research will be carried out with the financial support of the Libera Università di Lingue e Comunicazione IULM, Milan (Department of Humanities) and the co-financing of the Institut de Recherche en Langues et Littératures Européennes - ILLE (Université de Haute-Alsace of Mulhouse).


Download bibliography

Masterclass "Performative/collaborative translation of classical texts"

In collaboration with AICC - Italian Association for Classical Culture: "Performative/collaborative translation of classical texts (Summer 2022). Lecturer: Salvatore Cardone. Collaborative translation project on Lucian whose product is being published.


  • F. Laurenti,  Nello spazio condiviso: Trasmissione dei saperi e traduzione collaborativa, in «Poli-femo» (ANVUR fascia A, ISBN: 978-88-207-6584-2), n. 21, 2021, pp. 23-40.

  • F. Laurenti, Collaborative Approaches to Translation Between Europe and the Arab World During the Middle Ages, in «Le forme e la storia», XIV, 2022, 1-2, (ANVUR fascia A, ISBN: ABB06) pp. 181-196.

  • S. Sacchini (a.c.di), Allunaggi. Cosmonauti della letteratura, (traduzione collaborativa degli allievi dell’Istituto Comprensivo 'Vincenzo Pagani' di Monterubbiano- Fermo, con uno scritto di Chiara Lagani), Giaconi Editore, Recanati, 2022.

  • M. Higgins,  Riprendiamoci le strade d’Europa, Castelvecchi, Roma, 2022 [volume vincitore premio conferito da Literature Ireland (già ILE - Ireland Literature Exchange) (Agenzia nazionale irlandese per la promozione della letteratura irlandese in traduzione) con traduzioni dall’inglese di A. Bibbò, A. Binelli, M. Cambria, A. Comincini, F. Laurenti, R. Michelucci, F. Pedone, E. Terrinoni].
  • Laura Brignoli, “Esigenze d'oralità: dalla traduzione intralinguistica alla traduzione interlinguistica”, in Mediazioni, Tradurre l'oralità. Aspetti pragmatici e culturali (Special Issue a c. di G. Garzone, E. Liverani), No. 31 – 2021. (s.n.p.)
  • J. London, L’apostata, a c. di F. Pedone e S. Sacchini (traduzione degli allievi del Liceo “Da Vinci” di Civitanova Marche), Giaconi Editore, Recanati, 2021


  • F. Laurenti, Shakespeare on Stage for the Screen and Collaborative Translation: Cesare Deve Morire in «Lingue e Linguaggi» (Rivista Blind Peer-reviewed, ANVUR: fascia A, ISSN: 2239-0367).


  • V. Baselli: La traduzione collaborativa in interpretazione: il connubio tra interprete e tecnologia
  • L. Brignoli: Esigenze d'oralità: dalla traduzione intralinguistica alla traduzione interlinguistica
  • F. Cavagnoli: Traduzione e editing collaborativo: Of Gardens di Francis Bacon nelle edizioni De Silva (1948) e Henry Beyle (2014)
  • C. Cecchi: La collaborazione fra traduttore e casa editrice nella genesi del libro
  • Di Gregorio: Un editing che solo un traduttore può fare. La revisione del Vademecum del Traduttore come "editing collaborativo"
  • Y. Hamon: Traduzione collaborative a fini didattici: classi e strumenti per le competenze traduttive e redazionali
  • M. Logaldo: La sottotitolazione per i festival di cinema internazionali e per le iniziative istituzionali: riflessioni sull’esperienza collaborativa nella didattica della traduzione audiovisiva (TAV)
  • L. Maggi: Luciano di Samosata: alla ricerca dell'oralità. Diario di un progetto di traduzione collaborativa
  • J. Nikitina: Collaborative text mediation in medical academic texts : focus on post-editing
  • F. Pedone, S. Sacchini: Lavorare su piccoli indizi: esperienze di traduzione collaborativa nelle scuole
  • G. Sofo: Collaborazioni silenziose. La collaborazione "in assenza" tra traduttori della stessa opera.
  • M. Tamborini: Gestione di progetto e collaborazione nelle traduzioni giuridiche multilingue



"Permanent laboratory for collaborative revision of texts on / in translation"

As part of the Collaborative Translation: Approaches and Perspectives project, the Permanent Textual Revision Laboratory is proposed for students of Master's Degree Course in Specialized Translation and Conference Interpreting. The purpose of the laboratory is to provide basic training in an experimental way of consolidation and refinement techniques for the revision of texts on translation and in translation, in a collaborative dimension. The laboratory will be divided into face-to-face and online lessons during which the active participation of students will be required through exercises.

  • Lab. manager: Francesco Laurenti
  • Coordinator: Andrea Di Gregorio
  • Support: Silvia Velardi

Participants: Azzurra Taccini, Claudia Taurino, Antonella Castria, Allegra Mancini, Andrea Vercelli, Federica Villareale, Claudia Scurria, Lucrezie Boccasile, Sharon Seminara, Lorenza Abbamondi, Sofia Ballan, Ilaria Castiglioni, Claudia Coppola, Lara Delle Foglie, Eleonora Gardella, Eleonora Gatto, Lorena Mazzocchetti, Giorgia Vacri, Teresa Vettor, Camilla Zacchi.

"Permanent workshop of collaborative text revision on/in translation": collaborative translation/revision of the book Le guerre di Putin, Gremese Editore, Rome, 2023.

 As part of the "Permanent workshop of collaborative revision of texts on/in translation", the project of collaborative translation/revision of the book Le guerre di Putin, Gremese Editore, Rome, 2023 was activated in collaboration with Prof. L. Maggi (ESIT, Sorbonne Nouvelle - ISIT, Paris Panthéon-Assas) and students of ESIT (École Supérieure d'Interprètes et de Traducteurs, Sorbonne Nouvelle).