Modifications in documentation processes and their impact on the work of technical communicators and translators and their training.

  • Susanne Göpferich Karl-Franzenx-Universität Graz


A number of factors, such as technological progress, globalization, the new media, stricter product liability directives, and increasing competition with regard to documentation quality and cost efficiency, force companies to optimize and streamline documentation processes. This article presents the measures a large automotive manufacturer has taken within the last five years to cope with this pressure and describes the impact of these measures on the task profiles of technical communicators and translators working in the automotive industry. Drawing on Kiraly’s social constructivist approach to translator education, the last section of this paper discusses how university programs in translation and interpreting can prepare students for these changing professional profiles.