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Unique research centre for Uralic languages opens in Mari El

At the II Forum of Finno-Ugric Peoples of the Russian Federation in Saransk, the Rector of Mari State University, Mikhail Shvetsov, presented the new Centre for the Study of Uralic Languages, which opened on 1 September.

Mari ülikooli lingvistid

According to Shvetsov, it is the only one of its kind in Europe that contributes to the preservation and study of Uralic languages. A linguistics laboratory will be set up at the centre to develop digital services for the Mari language, including translation, electronic dictionaries, spell-checking and speech recognition. The Mari National University defines its mission as the preservation and valorisation of the unique cultural heritage of the Mari, Finno-Ugric and other Russian peoples.

Today, the University is recognised as a centre for the preservation and popularisation of the special cultural heritage of the Mari Republic. For 10 years now, the University has been organising the International Forum of Finno-Ugric Students “The Wealth of Finno-Ugric Peoples”, which has been attended by more than 2,000 students from seven foreign countries and 30 regions of the Russian Federation. Mari University intends to support Finno-Ugric linguists in every way possible, by awarding them named scholarships for their research, said Shvetsov.