How Many Languages Do We Need? The Economics of Linguistic Diversity by Victor Ginsburgh and Shlomo Weber
Published By: Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press ISBN: 978-0-691-13689-9 Date of Publication: 2011
Book Review Detail
Jacques Melitz of Heriot-Watt University
Review DOI: 10.1257/jel.49.4.1230.r29 Review Pages: 1313-14
Book Review Abstract
Jacques Melitz of Heriot-Watt University reviews "How Many Languages Do We Need? The Economics of Linguistic Diversity" by Victor Ginsburgh and Shlomo Weber. The EconLit abstract of the reviewed work begins, "Explores issues in multilingualism, focusing on the trade-off between the quest for efficiency that a small number of languages is thought to foster and a reduction in the disenfranchisement of noncore language speakers that calls for more languages. Discusses language as a homeland; linguistic policies, disenfranchisement, and standardization; linguistic, genetic, and cultural distances—how far is Nostratic; whether distances matter; individual communicative benefits; diversity and disenfranchisement indices; diversity and disenfranchisement—applications; and multilingualism in the European Union—a case study in linguistic policy. Ginsburgh is Professor of Economics Emeritus, a member of the European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics, and a member of the Center of Operations Research and Econometrics, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium. Weber is Robert H. and Nancy Dedman Trustee Professor of Economics at Southern Methodist University and Professor of Economics at the New Economic School, Moscow. Bibliography; index."