"Looking over the fence": A case study in communicative strategies and decision-making in the use of English as a lingua franca

Francesca Sacco, Jiwon Choi, Catrine Faarbæk & Frej Sønder Rasmussen

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


In the present project we have analysed data from a naturally occurring meeting in a context where English is used as a lingua franca. The primary question is concerned with how communicative strategies are employed by the participants at the meeting, and how these strategies affect the development of the decision-making process. The theoretical background is mainly based on Beyza Björkmans’s taxonomy of communicative strategies, Janus Mortensen’s problem-solving sequences, and Dell Hymes’ SPEAKING heuristics. Our analysis has primarily been concerned with how the participants employ communicative strategies to develop and understand a literally translated idiom. In order to resolve the issue, the participants make use of communicative strategies which have the beneficial effect of clarity, explicitness, and solidarity between them. Communicative strategies which we relate to language awareness and the speech component of key appeared to be equally significant as these allowed the participants to established their consensus. Thus, the analysis show how the different lingua-cultural backgrounds in the studied case can be helpful in facilitating a mutual understanding and reaching a decision.

UddannelserEngelsk, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Bachelor el. kandidat
Udgivelsesdato28 maj 2014


  • Problem-solving sequence
  • Why not
  • Communicative strategies
  • decision-making process
  • English as a lingua franca
  • Looking over the fence
  • ELF