Communication for Global Players: A Department ProfileDocument Transcript
Communication for Global Players:
A Department Profile
Department of English Business Communication
Published in 2004 by: Department of Language editing: Lauren Landsmann, Margit Ozvalda,
English Business Communication (Institut für Engli- Chris Ross
sche Wirtschaftskommunikation), Vienna University
of Economics and Business Administration (WU Wien), Photos: WU Wien; Bärbl Frodl, Gerlinde Mautner,
Nordbergstraße 15, 1090 Vienna, Austria; Margit Ozvalda, Robert Pichler
Coordination and administrative support: Bärbl Frodl,
General Editor and Sub-Editor Research: Doris Schleihs
Layout and graphic design:
Sub-Editor Teaching: Chris Ross Renate Gruber, Graphikdesign & Printproduktion,
Nestroyplatz 1/1, 1020 Vienna, Austria
Sub-Editor Administration and Statistics:
Bärbl Frodl Printing: Zimmerdruck, 1020 Vienna, Austria
Communication is the lifeblood of organizations and This brochure is intended to offer you a brief intro-
a pivotal component of successful leadership. In duction to what we do. We hope you will enjoy
executives’ daily lives, text and talk are crucial for leafing through it, perhaps following up the occa-
managing information, motivating employees and sional lead on our website (http://www.wu-wien.ac.at/
liaising with external stakeholders. inst/english).
In today’s globalized economy, managers are If you have any questions or comments, or feel that
expected to perform all of these functions both in we could help you with your organization’s commu-
their native language and in English, the lingua nications needs, please do not hesitate to contact us.
franca of international business.
Our Department addresses this need by providing
future executives with advanced communication
skills that are business-relevant, up-to-date and Richard Alexander Gerlinde Mautner
firmly grounded in our research and development
Mission Statement ........................ 2
Faculty and Staff .......................... 3 Teaching .................................... 23
Research .................................... 13 International Links and Activities ...... 29
Retirements and Departures ............ 32
The Department’s mission is to make a full contri- • We liaise with international academic communities
bution to the excellence of research and teaching at in linguistics, translation studies, management,
the Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien (WU), based on the economics and other relevant disciplines, and
understanding of English business communication as maintain an international presence in these commu-
an integral part of economic structures and business nities through publications and contributions to
processes. international conferences.
We therefore aim to help students become versatile, • We foster links with other departments of the WU,
confident users of English who are at home with both in coordinating curriculum planning and
specialized business terminology and command the exploring opportunities for interdisciplinary research.
wide range of communicative skills that executives
need in today’s global business environment. At the Simultaneously, we are responsive to the demands
same time, we are committed to the production of of the corporate, public and nonprofit sectors for
high-quality applied research into contemporary training and consultancy in business communication.
English, maintaining theoretical and methodological In providing services to such outside clients, we will
diversity, but with a clear focus on the language of combine practical relevance and efficient delivery
business and economics. with scholarly independence and the highest
In order to achieve these goals:
• We provide advanced, up-to-date, research-based
teaching in English business communication.
Faculty and Staff
O brave new world,
That has such people in’t!
(William Shakespeare, The Tempest)
o.Univ.Prof.Dr. Richard Alexander
Studies, qualifications, and professional Research areas:
• Tertiary level Business English communication:
Jesus College, Cambridge University (BA in Modern syllabuses and course design
Languages and Linguistics in 1967; MA in 1971). • Alignment of business language teaching with the
University of London (Graduate Certificate in Council of Europe’s Common European Framework
Education, English as a Foreign Language in 1969; of Reference
BSc [Econ] in 1974). University of Bremen, Germany • Economy, ecology and their linguistic framing
(Dr.phil. in English Linguistics in 1976). • Business English phraseology: computer linguistic
University appointments in Finland, Italy, the UK and • English as a Lingua Franca – questions and implica-
Germany, teaching English as a Foreign Language, tions for English business communication against
Linguistics, Applied Linguistics and Business English. the background of the Bologna process
Joined the Department in 1994 as Professor of
Business English. Administrative functions:
• Vice-Dean for Teaching Evaluation
• Member of Senate Finance Committee
• Head of Department (since 2004)
Univ.Prof.Dr. Gerlinde Mautner
Studies, qualifications, and professional Research areas:
• Corporate and managerial communication
University of Vienna (Mag.phil. degree in English and • The discourse of higher education
History in 1987). Dr.phil. in English Linguistics awarded • Discursive implications of commercialization in the
with distinction (sub auspiciis praesidentis) in 1993. nonprofit sector
Habilitation in 1997. Professor of Business English • Critical Discourse Analysis and corpus linguistics
since 2000. • Marketing communications
Visiting scholar at the universities of Birmingham Consultancy work:
(1989/90), Lancaster (1994/95), and Cardiff (2003/04).
• Customer-oriented communications design
• English coaching
• Vice-Rector for International Relations (1998–2002)
Univ.Prof.Dr. Wolfgang Obenaus
Studies, qualifications, and professional Research areas:
• Contrastive business terminology
WU (Mag.rer.soc.oec. degree in 1976 and • Business communication, with a particular focus
Dr.rer.soc.oec. in 1979). Universitätsassistent at the on the language of presentations, meetings and
Department (1976–1991). Professor of Business negotiations
English since 1991. • Cross-cultural linguistics
Two six-month research periods at Georgetown Administrative functions:
University, in conjunction with the Export-Import
Bank, Washington, DC (1978) and the Overseas • Head of Department (1992–2003)
Private Investment Corporation (1982); research on • Chairman of the Faculty of Foreign Language
Schumpeter scholarships at Harvard Business Business Communication
School (1990 and 1998). • Member of the University Senate and several other
• Program Director for the degree program in
International Business Administration
Associate Professors, Assistant Professors, and Research Assistants
ao.Univ.Prof.Mag.Dr. Alexander Beer Mag. Eva Kerbler
Associate Professor Research Assistant
WU (Dr.rer.soc.oec. in 1995). University of Vienna: University of Vienna: studies in English and French
studies in translation and law. Assistant Professor at (Mag.phil. in 2002). WU: studies in Commerce.
the Department since 1991, Habilitation in 2004. Joined the Department in 2004.
Associate Professor since 2004. Research areas: Critical Discourse Analysis;
Deputy Head of Department (1997–2003). discourse of globalization.
Research areas: Corporate communication; corpo-
rate language; entertainment industry; US studies. Mag.Dr. Veronika Koller
Assistenzprofessor Mag.Dr. Martin Herles University of Vienna: English and Arabic Studies
Assistant Professor (Dr.phil. in 2003).
WU (Dr.rer.soc.oec. in 1996). University of Vienna: Assistant Professor at the Department (2000–2004).
studies in English and linguistics. Assistant Professor As of September 2004, lecturer in Critical Discourse
at the Department since 1991, with tenure since 2003. Analysis at Lancaster University (UK), Department of
Responsible for the accreditation of courses taken at Linguistics and Modern English Language.
other universities. Research areas: Critical Discourse Analysis;
Research areas: Business English terminology; gender and language; metaphor.
discourse analysis; sociolinguistics; language change;
social security; British cultural studies.
Alexander Martin Eva Veronika Erhard Marlene
Beer Herles Kerbler Koller Lick Miglbauer
MMag. Erhard Lick Mag.Dr. Margit Ozvalda
Research Assistant Assistant Professor
WU (Mag.rer.soc.oec. in 1994). University of Vienna: University of Vienna: English and Comparative
French and American Studies (Mag.phil. in 1999). Literature (Dr.phil. in 2003). Joined the Department in
Extensive teaching and administrative experience in June 1998, initially part-time; involved in benchmarking
higher education. Joined the Department in 2004. of international Business English exams and adminis-
Research areas: Language of advertising; tering the OIBEC exams. Assistant Professor since
Canadian Studies. October 1999.
Research areas: English as an International Language
Mag. Marlene Miglbauer and World Englishes; pragmatics; teaching/learning
Research Assistant materials; academic writing in international contexts;
University of Graz: studies in English and history Postcolonial Studies.
(Mag.phil. in 2002). Research Assistant at Liverpool
University, working on a project funded by the Mag.Dr. Robert Pichler, MBA
Economic and Social Research Council (04/2003– Assistant Professor
03/2004). Joined the Department in 2004. University of Vienna: International Business Adminis-
Research areas: Discourse and gender; health and tration (Mag.rer.soc.oec. in 1996); Fulbright Scholar at
computer-mediated communication. the University of Iowa (MBA in 1998); WU (Dr.rer.soc.oec.
in 2003). Professional experience in the pharmaceutical
and insurance industries. Graduate Assistant at the
University of Iowa (1999–2000). Assistant Professor at
the Department (2000–2004).
Research areas: Corporate leadership with a US
focus; organizational behavior; cross-cultural studies.
Margit Robert Ulrike Ruth Anthony Marjorie
Ozvalda Pichler Thorwartl Trinder Copnall Fiebinger
Mag.Dr. Irene Pollach Mag.Dr. Ruth Trinder
Assistant Professor Assistant Professor
WU (Dr.rer.soc.oec. in 2002); University of Vienna: University of Vienna: English and Communication
studies in translation and linguistics. Internships at the Science (Dr.phil. in 2000). Teacher of German at
Austrian Foreign Trade Commission, Warsaw (1999) the Manchester Business School (1986–1989).
and the UN General Secretariat, New York (2000). Assistant Professor at the Department since 1994,
Assistant Professor at the Department since 2000. heading the Online English Mentor team since 2001
Responsible for maintaining Department web presence. (see pp. 26–27).
Research areas: Corporate communication; WWW- Research areas: New Media in language teaching;
mediated communication of companies, nonprofit Second Language Acquisition Theory; learning styles.
organizations and individuals; ethical aspects of the
Mag. Ulrike Thorwartl Teaching Faculty
WU (Mag.rer.soc.oec. in 2000). Anthony Copnall, BA (Hons), PGCE
Part-time Assistant Professor at the Department Native speaker, born in Lancashire (UK). Qualified
since 2001. secondary school teacher, with four years’ experience
Research areas: Financial markets terminology; in England. Exchange lecturer 2002–2004, subse-
capital markets communications. quently faculty member.
Werner Wernfried Lauren Susan Michael Chris
Gasser Krieger Landsmann Norris Raab Ross
Marjorie Fiebinger, BA Lauren Landsmann, BA, MSc
Native speaker, born in Maryland (USA). Extensive Native speaker, born in Tennessee (USA), with post-
experience of teaching English as a second language graduate qualification in English-language teaching
and as language editor and translator. Jointly respon- and six years’ experience in the field. Faculty member
sible for development of teaching materials at the since 2004.
WU. Faculty member since 1986.
Susan Norris, BA (Hons), MEd
Mag. Werner Gasser Specialist in English communication training for pro-
Qualified translator and interpreter with extensive fessionals. Co-author of several English coursebooks
experience in business and legal fields. Previously and of the WU language learning package Online
studied business administration in London. Faculty English Mentor. Faculty member since 2003.
member since 1987.
Mag. Michael Raab, MA
Mag.art. Barbara Jacobeit Faculty member since 1986, with previous teaching
Experienced teacher of Business English who has experience at a US college. Jointly responsible for
been at the Department since 1988. Closely involved design and development of the Department’s teaching
in materials development at various levels. program, and co-author of several Business English
Mag. Wernfried Krieger
Experienced English teacher in the vocational secon- Chris Ross, BA (Hons), MA (Hons), PhD
dary sector, with wide involvement in teacher training. Native speaker, born in Bulawayo (Zimbabwe). Quali-
External lecturer in 2002/03, faculty member since fied translator, with lengthy professional and teaching
2003. experience in UK. External lecturer 1998–2000, sub-
sequently faculty member.
Andrea Silvia Beatrix Romana Gernot Josef
Steiner Stöcklöcker Suppan-Raab Zeilinger Neuwirth Weidacher
Mag. Andrea Steiner, BA Former Faculty Members Affiliated
Professional communication skills trainer (with a focus to the Department in 2004
on presentation skills, negotiating and writing skills).
Co-author of the WU language learning package
Online English Mentor. Faculty member since 2003. Oberrat Dr. Gernot Neuwirth
Joined the Department in 1966. Director of the WU
Dipl.Dolm. Silvia Stöcklöcker Language Resource Center between 1975 and 2001.
Qualified and highly experienced translator, confe- Currently examiner for final degree examinations.
rence interpreter and sworn court interpreter. Faculty
member 1987–2003, currently external lecturer. Mag.Dr. Doris Prachner
Assistant Professor at the Department between 1989
Mag. Beatrix Suppan-Raab and 1994. University lecturer and examiner for final
Experienced English teacher at secondary level, with degree examinations until 2004.
Austrian and UK professional qualifications. External
lecturer 1994–2002, subsequently faculty member. tit.ao.Univ.Prof.Dr. Josef Weidacher, MA
Faculty member between 1968 and 2000. Awarded
Mag. Romana Zeilinger the title of professor in 1990. Currently external
Qualified teacher of English, with experience at lecturer and examiner for final degree examinations.
secondary and university level, involved in develop-
ment of teaching materials. Joined the Department
Barbara Elisabeth Monika Dorothea Irene Karin
Frodl Hefler Millecker Schleihs Siedl Wenschitz
Chief Administrator Secretarial Staff
MMag.Dr. Barbara Frodl Elisabeth Hefler
Monika Millecker, MA
University of Vienna, Institute of Translation and Inter- Dorothea Schleihs (Amtssekretärin)
pretation (Mag.phil. in 1990). WU (Mag.rer.soc.oec. in Irene Siedl
1994 and Dr.rer.soc.oec. in 2004). Academy for Music Karin Wenschitz (Amtssekretärin)
and Performing Arts, Vienna: studies in music (gradu-
ation in 1989) and postgraduate university course in
arts management (akademisch geprüfte Kulturmana-
gerin in 1997).
Assistant Professor at the Department (1992–2000).
Chief Administrator and lecturer since October 2000.
Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.
(William Shakespeare, Hamlet)
Research Profile Selected Publications & Conference Papers
The two cornerstones of the Department’s research Below you will find brief descriptions of each of
profile are: the Department’s main areas of research activity,
(a) Unity in terms of its focus on research questions together with a selection of publications produced
relevant to business communication. and papers given by our faculty. These are intended
(b) Diversity in terms of the theories and methodol- as examples only; for a full list of publications and
ogies employed. papers please consult the WU’s Research Data Base
Our research encompasses the following areas:
• Organizational and Managerial Communication,
• Organizational and managerial communication
focusing on corporate ethics, customer-orientation,
• Marketing communication
branding, the discourse of the public and nonprofit
• Intercultural communication sectors, electronic communication, and the lan-
• English as an international lingua franca guage of the World Wide Web.
• Ecological linguistics BEER, Alexander, 2004: The Impact of Electronic
Mail on Business Processes. Frankfurt: Peter Lang.
• Business English teaching
• Business English terminology
MAUTNER, Gerlinde, 2002: Universitäten online –
• Business English phraseology
Die Kommerzialisierung des Diskurses in der
• Critical Discourse Analysis tertiären Bildung am Beispiel von Business
Schools. In: Thimm, C. (ed.), Unternehmenskom-
munikation On- und Offline. Wandelprozesse
interner und externer Kommunikation durch neue
Medien. Wien / New York: Peter Lang, 209–229.
MAUTNER, Gerlinde, 2003: Education for Sale. POLLACH, Irene, 2004 (& A. SCHARL,
Managerialism in Educational Discourse. Paper M. PIEBER & H. TREIBLMAIER): Environmental
at the Annual Meeting of the British Association Investment Sites: Sector Analysis and Develop-
for Applied Linguistics, University of Leeds, ment of GreenMoney.at. In: Scharl, A. (ed.):
September 2003. Environmental Online Communication. London:
PICHLER, Robert, 2003: The Impact of Culture
on Leadership and Communication – Comparing
Austrian and US American Corporate Leadership. • Marketing Communications, exploring how
Doctoral dissertation (WU). semiotic resources, both text and pictures, are
used strategically to attract attention, inform,
POLLACH, Irene, 2001: Ethics Statements as a and persuade.
Strategic Tool in Corporate Reputation Manage-
ment. Paper at the 5th International Conference MAUTNER, Gerlinde, 2002: Von der Forschung
on Corporate Reputation, Identity & Competitive- zum sinnlichen Vergnügen: On Multimodality in
ness, Pre-Conference Consortium. Adverts for Beauty Products. Paper at the Inter-
national Symposium on Multi-Modal Discourse,
POLLACH, Irene, 2003: Communicating Corpo- University of Salzburg, 25–26 January 2002.
rate Ethics on the World Wide Web. A Discourse
Analysis of Selected Web Sites. Frankfurt: Peter MAUTNER, Gerlinde (forthcoming): For-Profit
Lang. Discourse in the Not-for-Profit Sector:
The Marriage of Mission and Management.
In: Erreygers, Guido & Geert Jacobs (eds):
Discourse and Economics.
• Intercultural Communication, with special ALEXANDER, Richard, 2003: G.lobal L.anguages
reference to the specifics of the Anglo-Saxon O.ppress B.ut A.re L.iberating, too: the Dialectics
cultural cluster. of English. In: Mair, C. (ed.): The Politics of
English as a World Language. New Horizons in
FRODL, Barbara, 2004: Das Medienbild Öster- Postcolonial Cultural Studies. Amsterdam / New
reichs in englischsprachigen Tageszeitungen des York: Rodopi, 87–95.
ostasiatisch-japanischen Kulturkreises. Ein inter-
kultureller Vergleich. Doctoral dissertation (WU). OZVALDA, Margit, 2002: From Textual to Didactic
Authenticity: Business English Textbooks and
OBENAUS, Wolfgang, 2003 (& John BENNETT): English as an International Language. Paper at
Evaluating Presentation Skills in an Intercultural BAAL Conference, University of Wales, Cardiff,
Context Using the Common European Frame- UK, September 2002.
work. Paper at the Annual Conference of The
Association for Business Communication (Europe),
Lugano, Switzerland, 29–31 May 2003. • Ecological linguistics, analyzing the linguistic
framing of ecology, the economy, and their inter-
PICHLER, Robert, 2002: American Leader Be- relationship.
havior – A European Perspective. Paper at the
ABC Southeast Conference in Savannah, USA. ALEXANDER, Richard, 2002: Everyone is talking
about “sustainable development”. Can they all
mean the same thing? Computer discourse analy-
• English as an international lingua franca, dealing sis of ecological texts. In: Fill, A., H. Penz & W.
with structural characteristics and communicative Trampe (eds): Colourful Green Ideas. Bern, etc.:
challenges. Peter Lang, 239–254.
NEUWIRTH, Gernot, 2002: Eco-linguistics – OZVALDA, Margit, 2002: “The Audio, the Visual
going beyond the text. In: Fill, A., H. Penz & and the Text”: Multimodality in Business English
W. Trampe (eds): Colourful Green Ideas. Textbooks – in Pursuit of Promoting English as
Bern, etc.: Peter Lang, 361–371. an International Language? Paper at the Interna-
tional Symposium on Multi-Modal Discourse,
University of Salzburg, 25–26 January 2002.
• Business English teaching, comprising textbook
analysis and evaluation, error analysis, second OZVALDA, Margit, 2003: Business English Text-
language acquisition theory and learning styles, books and English as an International Language:
computer-assisted language learning, as well as Issues of Authenticity. An Analysis of Selected
syllabus and course design. Listening Materials. Doctoral dissertation (Univer-
sity of Vienna).
ALEXANDER, Richard, 2003: How effectively and
operationally proficient are your students of busi- TRINDER, Ruth, 2000: A Critical Evaluation
ness English at tertiary level? Paper at 15th of the New Media in Language Learning and
ENCoDE Conference, HTW Chur, Switzerland, Teaching with Special Reference to Multimedia
25–27 September 2003. CD-ROMs for Business English. Doctoral disser-
tation (University of Vienna).
HERLES, Martin & Ruth TRINDER, 2001: Can we TRINDER, Ruth, 2003: Conceptualisation and
have more customised CD-ROMs, please? In: development of multimedia courseware in a
Cameron, K. (ed.), CALL – The Challenge of tertiary educational context: juxtaposing approach,
Change. Exeter: Elm Bank Publications, 233–240. content, and technology considerations.
In: ReCALL 15(1), 79–93.
TRINDER, Ruth & Erika LADURNER, 2003: • Critical discourse analysis, with particular regard
Integration of e-learning into a tertiary educa- to theory, methodology, and applications to busi-
tional context. Paper at the 6th International ness texts.
Conference on Languages for Specific Purposes,
Vilanova i la Geltrud (Barcelona). KOLLER, Veronika, 2004: Metaphor and Gender
in Business Media Discourse: a Critical Cognitive
Study. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
• Business English terminology, with special
reference to international trade and finance. KOLLER, Veronika, 2004: Businesswomen and
war metaphors: “Possessive, jealous and pugna-
THORWARTL, Ulrike (forthcoming): Drivers cious”? In: Journal of Sociolinguistics, 8(1), 3–22.
of Stock Exchange Mergers and Alliances in
Europe. Doctoral dissertation (WU). KOLLER, Veronika (forthcoming): CDA and social
cognition: Evidence from business media dis-
course. In: Discourse & Society.
• Business English phraseology, using the
methods of computer-assisted corpus linguistics. KOLLER, Veronika & Gerlinde MAUTNER, 2004:
Computer applications in Critical Discourse Analy-
ALEXANDER, Richard, 2002: Concordancing sis. In: Coffin, C., A. Hewings & K. O’Halloran
and the teaching of vocabulary and phraseology (eds), Applying English Grammar: Functional and
of Business English. In: Koskela, M. et al. (eds.), Corpus Approaches. London: Hodder Arnold,
Porta Scientiae. Lingua specialis I–II. Vaasa: 216–228.
University of Vaasa, 597–609.
Work in Progress
In 2004, as this brochure is going to print, faculty Richard ALEXANDER is writing two books, entitled
members are engaged in a range of research projects. Studies in Tertiary Level Business English: Syllabuses
Again, for reasons of space only a selection can be and Course Design and Economy, Ecology and Their
mentioned here. Linguistic Framing.
Three faculty members are currently working on their Gerlinde MAUTNER is continuing her work on the
post-doctoral theses (Habilitationen): external communications of higher education institu-
tions, preparing a journal article dealing with the
• Martin HERLES: The Discourse of Business discourse of the ‘entrepreneurial university’. Returning
Newspaper Articles: A Multilevel Contrastive to her earlier work on methodological issues in Critical
Analysis and Its Application in Teaching Practice Discourse Analysis (CDA), she is also finishing an
article on the opportunities and challenges involved
• Irene POLLACH: Communicating Trust in Electronic in using Web-based textual data in CDA.
Wolfgang OBENAUS is pursuing his interest in Busi-
• Ruth TRINDER: Learner Internal and External ness English terminology and intercultural business
Factors Influencing Attitude Towards and Use of communication, preparing a joint publication with John
Multimedia Language Learning Materials in a Bennett (St. Gallen University) which will deal with the
University Context evaluation of Business English presentation skills.
Research-Based Teaching Materials:
A major focus of the Department’s work consists in
publishing teaching materials founded on our ongoing
research and tailored to the needs of today’s business
ALEXANDER, Richard, 2000 (& Leo JONES):
New International Business English. Communica-
tion skills in English for business purposes.
Updated Edition. Cambridge: Cambridge Univer-
sity Press. (Teacher’s Book, Student’s Book,
Workbook, audio CD sets). OBENAUS, Wolfgang & Josef WEIDACHER
(forthcoming): The New Handbook of Business
MAUTNER, Gerlinde, 2001: Englische Grammatik English. Keywords in Context. Ueberreuter, Wien,
für die Wirtschaftskommunikation. 5th Edition (enlarged & updated).
Frankfurt / Wien: Ueberreuter.
Membership in Professional
All of our faculty are active members of a variety of
professional organizations, including:
• Association for Business Communication (ABC)
• Austrian-American Educational Commission
• British Association of Applied Linguistics (BAAL)
• European Association for Computer Assisted
Language Learning (EUROCALL)
• European Association for International Education
• European Network for Communication Development
in Business and Education (ENCoDe)
• Gesellschaft für Angewandte Linguistik e.V. (GAL)
• IATEFL Business English Special Interest Group
• Information Resources Management Association (IRMA)
OZVALDA, Margit, Michael RAAB, & Romana • Interdisciplinary Research Network on Environmental
ZEILINGER, 2002: Englische Wirtschaftskommu- Online Communication (ECOresearch.net)
nikation I (WIKO I). Coursebook. 3rd edition. • International Association for the Development of the
Management Book Service. Information Society (IADIS)
• International Association of Cross-Cultural Compe-
FIEBINGER, Marjorie, Werner GASSER, Barbara tence and Management
JACOBEIT, & Silvia STÖCKLÖCKER, 2003: • International Association of Teachers of English as a
Englische Wirtschaftskommunikation II (WIKO II). Foreign Language (IATEFL)
Coursebook. 2nd edition. Management Book • Verband für Angewandte Linguistik Österreichs
You taught me language, and my profit on’t
Is, I know how to curse.
(William Shakespeare, The Tempest)
Our goal Our program
The Department’s teaching program is designed to The Department’s courses are organized in seven
enable students to communicate effectively in English, stages, the first four of which constitute the base
in their studies and subsequent professional careers. program taken by most students. The remaining three
Accordingly, the emphasis of our syllabus is on under- are significantly more specialized, and are taken by
standing, interpreting and applying the terminology those who wish to give their studies a distinctively
and modes of expression typically used to discuss international flavor. Given the large numbers of students
business and economics topics. and the need to keep group sizes manageable, these
courses involve very large numbers of individual
Our students classes (see p. 22). To cope with this load, we call on
the services not only of our permanent research and
The Business English program is followed, in whole teaching staff, but also of a team of experienced
or in part, by the vast majority of WU undergraduate external lecturers.
students. As its starting point, it takes the level of the
Austrian school-leaving certificate (Matura). For stu- As regards the types of classes involved, our courses
dents who have yet to attain that, separate bridging fall into three categories:
courses are provided. Those who complete the full
program reach an advanced level of competence in • Practical classes in business communication
English, both written and spoken, and have an excel- (WIKO, for short)
lent command of specialist business language. • Lectures
WIKO – a content-based approach to business understanding of the English used in specialist busi-
communication ness publications – English, that is, which is distin-
guished not only by technical terminology but also
The program’s first stage, WIKO I, enables students by other linguistic features, including certain types of
to make the transition from secondary-school study advanced general vocabulary, idioms and structures.
of English. It consolidates their existing knowledge, In terms of expression, the main focus is on devel-
imparts the new skills they will need at the WU, oping students’ ability to provide professional busi-
and provides them with an introduction to selected ness advice in English, at various levels of formality.
aspects of Business English.
WIKO II and III build on this base. In these courses,
students study in more detail the language of various In all the WIKO classes, students also develop their
sub-fields within business and economics, carefully capacity for expression. On the one hand, they
graded according to their accessibility. Thus, while engage in a range of language-training tasks, both
WIKO II deals with the general features of business in- and outside the classroom; these include text
organizations, personnel management and marketing, comprehension, structured oral exercises (e.g. nego-
WIKO III covers the language associated with termino- tiating in pairs or groups), and general discussion. On
logically more challenging topics such as mergers and the other hand, they study the features of particular,
acquisitions, financial management and accounting, business-relevant text types (e.g. letters and e-mails
and international payment, as well as the basic prin- related to the various stages of a typical business
ciples of macroeconomics. transaction; descriptions of tables and charts; simple
business reports), before themselves producing
WIKO IV is the starting point of the program’s second examples of such texts.
part. It is designed primarily to give students a deeper
The Online English Mentor:
High-End Computer-Assisted Learning
The very large numbers of students following the
Department’s courses have provided a particular in-
centive for us to develop new, innovative ways of sup-
porting students in their learning of Business English.
The result has been a software package known as the
Ruth Trinder, Erika Ladurner, and James Riley
Online English Mentor (OEM). Accessible by all WU
students on the University’s interactive learning plat-
form, the OEM complements and supports the written
materials and face-to-face teaching provided in the
various courses on business communication.
In designing the OEM, great attention was paid to
making it as user-friendly as possible. In particular, The OEM Project Team:
the package is intended to serve learners with widely Project Leader: Dr. Ruth Trinder (see p. 9)
differing needs and starting levels. This is achieved by Content Developers: Susan Norris, BA (Hons), MEd
offering not only explanations and learning tasks, but (see p. 10) and Mag. Andrea Steiner, BA (see p. 11)
also a host of optional support facilities such as defi- Technical Development: Dr. Erika Ladurner (language-
nitions of particular words, hints to help users answer learning software developer and project coordinator)
the questions posed, and detailed feedback on the and James Riley, BA (Hons) (multimedia and Internet
answers provided. In addition, extensive references developer), supported 2001–2003 by Christopher
are made to further information on the topics covered. Anderson, BA, and Parwinder Sivia Singh.
Lectures on specialized Business English topics Master’s theses (Diplomarbeiten)
In both parts of the teaching program, students In addition to their other teaching, faculty members
take one of several alternative lecture courses provi- also supervise Master’s theses in their areas of research
ding in-depth treatment of selected areas of Business interest. Two recent examples of the topics covered
English. Fields covered in recent semesters have are the communication strategies used in marketing
included the following: Shakespeare venues and events, and the status of
English as a lingua franca in European tertiary manage-
• At level 1: marketing communications, the language ment education.
of international trade, and of financial markets and
• At level 2: the English of international marketing, of
international trade policy, and of the US economy.
Professional writing and presentation skills
Finally, students who complete the full Business
English program take a seminar class in which they
apply the skills and knowledge they have acquired
to a research-related task. As well as writing an aca-
demic research paper, this involves giving a 20-minute
presentation of their main findings, answering related
questions, and participating in the ensuing discussion.
International Links and Activities
Why then, the world’s mine oyster...
(William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor)
• Gerlinde Mautner: Centre for Language and • Prof. John Bennett / University of St. Gallen
Communication Research, University of Cardiff
(08/2003–02/2004; 08/2004–02/2005). • Prof. Judy Delin / University of Leeds
• Wolfgang Obenaus: ESADE (School of Languages), • Prof. Åge Lind / Norwegian School of Economics
Barcelona (05/2000); Chulalongkorn and Business Administration, Bergen
University, Bangkok (04/2001; 04/2003; 03–04/2004);
Norwegian School of Economics and Business • Karen Mishra / Wake Forest University,
Administration, Bergen (09/2002). Winston-Salem, NC
• Irene Pollach: Bentley College (08/2001); University • Prof. Patricia Smith / ESADE, Barcelona
of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (07–09/2003);
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (07–08/2004). Professors Mishra and Delin taught at the Department
in the summer semesters of 2001 and 2004, respec-
tively. Professors Bennett, Lind, and Smith are regular
visitors to the Department, teaching classes in busi-
ness presentations, the language of advertising & PR,
and legal English.
Further International Activities
Academic advisors (Kooperationsbeauftragte) CEMS (Community of European Management
for joint study programs between the WU and Schools) and ASEAN-European Academic
foreign partner universities University Network
• Axel Beer: University of Wisconsin-Madison Wolfgang Obenaus is the WU representative in the
CEMS Interfaculty Group “Foreign Languages” as
• Wolfgang Obenaus: Haskayne School of Business well as in the ASEAN-European Academic University
(Calgary), Gadjah Mada University (Yogyakarta), and Network. He has also acted as CEMS examiner, as
Nanyang Business School (Singapore) have Anne Leaf, Marjorie Fiebinger, and Chris Ross.
• Irene Pollach: University College Cork and AIM
Corporate Social Responsibility
Ruth Trinder and Margit Ozvalda are the WU represen-
tatives in the three-year MINERVA project on “Open For several years, the Department has supported
Development of Language Competencies” (ODLAC) the Fair Trade movement, with Josef Weidacher
submitted to the European Commission and focusing organizing PR events and helping to bring fairly traded
on e-learning and tandem learning. coffee to the vending machines at the WU.
Retirements and Departures In memoriam
Prof. Ciarán Cassidy, MA (Econ), MSc (Econ), PhD o.Univ.Prof.Mag.Dr.
Mag. Klaus Dieter Haidacher, MBA Hugh Dominic Purcell (1932–2003)
Dr. Silvia Jexenflicker
Mag. Robert Kastl When Hugh Purcell came to the WU as a Full
Sandra Lang, BA Professor in 1976, he had already had a rich and
Anne Leaf, MA, MBA varied career in universities from Northern Ireland
Judith Lebic to Nepal. His interests ranged equally wide, encom-
Gerard McDonnell, BA (Hons), MBA passing not only the various aspects of business,
Oberrätin Dkfm.Dr. Ingrid Markwitz economics, and finance which he taught while at the
Daniela Pum Department, but also such topics as English poetry
Mag. Craig Thorpe, BA (on which he lectured at the University of Vienna)
and Basque anthropology. He was the Department’s
Head from 1988 to 1992 and remained actively
involved in its affairs until shortly before his death.
He is sadly missed.
External Lecturers and Exchange Lecturers (2000–2004)
Christopher Anderson, BA Dr. Heinz Schwarz
Mag. Gottfried Bacher Hannah Jane Shepherd, BA (Hons)
Mag. Brigitte Bojkowszky Linda Slattery, MA
Eudes Brophy, MA Patrizia Spella, BA (Hons)
Mag. Wolf-Dieter Bruzek Elizabeth Louise Tanguay, BA (Hons), MA
John Buczak, MA Mag. Barbara Weinand
Ruth Donaldson, BA (Hons), PGCE Mag. Gunhild Widhalm
Mag. Artur Eckert Chantal Wright, BA (Hons)
Mag. Karin Johanna Grigar, MA Dr. Susanne Wurm
Mag. Elisabeth Hambrusch Mag. Barbara Zehetmayr
Elizabeth Hull, BA, MBA
Dr. Manfred Hückel
Dr. Silvia Jexenflicker
Dr. Gunter Kaltenböck, MA
Mag. Barbara Kapek
Katherine Loewenstein, BA (Hons)
Merran Loewenthal, LLB
Dr. Christian Meyer
Dipl.Dolm.Mag. Peter Moravec
Jonathan O’Shea, BA (Hons)
Dr. Hans Platzer
Rowena Catherine Prewett-Schrempf, BA (Hons)
Nigel Reynard, BA (Hons)
Rupert Sage, BA (Hons)
Department of English Business Communication
(Institut für Englische Wirtschaftskommunikation)
Vienna University of Economics and
Business Administration (WU Wien)
5th floor, Sectors A and B
Tel. (+43 1) 31336 / 4985
Fax (+43 1) 31336 / 747