Guidance on language use

KI's language policy aims to provide employees with guidance on overall language issues and language use.

Why is a language policy needed?

According to the Language Act, Swedish authorities must use  cultivated, simple and comprehensible language. The Swedish language is the language of national administration, and they have a special responsibility for ensuring that Swedish terminology in their various areas of expertise is accessible, and that it is used and developed. At the same time, it should be taken into account that KI is a  multicultural workplace and has a large number of employees and students who use English, and other languages, in everyday speech and writing.

How we are perceived, communicate and strategically use language to achieve our goals is an important part of KI’s activities. A coordinated and conscious use of language at KI means that we contribute to the legislation and promote quality and inclusion.

KI's language policy

In addition to clarifying the requirements for KI as an authority in the use of language, KI's language policy rests on four pillars:

  • Increased language awareness - employees are encouraged to be aware of their language choices and their consequences.
  • Parallel use of Swedish and English - the policy promotes the use of both languages side by side.
  • Focus on equality - language should be inclusive and non-discriminatory.
  • Strengthening KI as a global university - the policy balances global ambitions with the national mission.

The uses of English and Swedish at KI often differ. It is important to be sensitive to these differences and to adapt the choice of language to the context. It is the responsibility of both managers and employees to actively contribute to this adaptation and to ensure that the choice of language supports the goals and objectives of the organisation. By working together, we can create a more inclusive and effective working environment at KI.

About the project for a language policy at KI

In the autumn of 2022, a project was set up on behalf of the University Director to develop a language policy at KI. The policy is based on a thorough internal survey that included a preliminary study and advice from a reference group, together with insights from other universities and expert support. The proposed language policy was then anchored and collaborated with committees, the Faculty Board, students and trade union organisations.


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Emma Hägg

International Coordinator