Translating does not mean to switch from one language to another by merely looking up words in a dictionary, but rather to fully understand the meaning of a portion of text in a given language and try and render its message in another language, thus giving the reader the impression that the text was written in the target language, not translated.
The mere knowledge of another language does not guarantee, by itself, a good translation, which requires:
- the knowledge of the source culture, as well as of the source language
- a good understanding of the topic
- the right techniques to transpose the message into another language
- an excellent command of the target language
In order to ensure the highest quality of translation it is important to:
- know the translation subject matter
- perform extensive research to make sure the correct terminology is used
- consult experts, if necessary.
My working approach
When translating I always try to combine the above into each of the following different translation stages:
- a first translation draft
- translation review
- final reading of the target language translated text only – possibly after some time has elapsed – to ensure the text flows and sounds natural
A workflow structured in this way makes it easier to step back from the translated text and check whether the chosen translation solutions are appropriate, thus facilitating quality control.
This is why I am convinced that you do not become a translator simply because you know a foreign language; it is also important to be adequately trained and prepared.
Thanks to my university course of study (European studies) and my employment at the Italian Translation Unit of the European Parliament, European issues and all matters relating to the functioning of the EU institutions have become my main specialty.
European Parliament, Strasbourg
Over the years I have also gained considerable experience in several fields, including:
- political and social issues and institutional relations
- economics and finance
- immigration, asylum and human rights
- international organizations and cooperation
- marketing and market research
- medical imaging
- gastronomy and catering
- web sites