Mapping Our Endangered Languages

As we continue to recognize the International Year of Indigenous Languages (IYIL 2019), we have been talking about endangered languages and how it is possible to save an endangered language.

According to UNESCO, there are 7,000 languages spoken worldwide, and 2,680 languages spoken by indigenous people that are in danger.  In addition, UNESCO notes there are 370 million indigenous people worldwide with 5,000 different cultures located within 90 countries.

While we plan on exploring some of these languages in detail in future months, we felt it valuable to spotlight some of the available resources on languages, including a layered map created by SIL International that shows the location of the globe’s endangered languages:

Endangered Languages
Map of languages courtesy of SIL International.

Additional language resources include:

2019 IYIL – The dedicated page by UNESCO for this year’s campaign.

SIL International – SIL International is a faith-based nonprofit organization committed to serving language communities worldwide as they build capacity for sustainable language development.

Ethnologue – An online resource that lists every recognized language.  Ethnologue, which is powered by SIL International, currently counts 7,111 languages.

UNESCO Language Diversity – News piece from UNESCO about the role of language diversity in sustainable development.

UNESCO Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger — The latest edition of the Atlas was published in 2010 and is available in English, French and Spanish.

Our goal is to continue to add to our resources of languages during IYIL2019, and we welcome suggestions from all.