Founded in 2015, the Research Institute of U.S. Spanish, Inc. (RIUSS) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization created to fill a current gap in research on written communication in Spanish in the United States. Research will be focused on the unique characteristics of the use of Spanish in this bilingual society.
RIUSS strives to create and function in a space for dialogue and research to determine and consolidate the use of formal Spanish of the United States and to contribute to the study and use of plain language/lenguaje claro in health care and other human services.
RIUSS aims to consolidate the linguistic identity of Spanish speakers in the United States through the study of the written/formal uses of the language.
RIUSS recognizes the basic premise that the formal written Spanish used in the United States for information and communication purposes is mostly a product of translation.
Due to the large and growing number of Spanish speakers, in recent decades the use of Spanish has increased exponentially. The Federal Government, state and local governments, as well as the private sector have all recognized this fact by making Spanish an important factor in their communications with the public. The United States is a Spanish-speaking country, but one in which most Spanish language communications are not originally written in Spanish, but are instead mediated through translation.
However, the field of translation studies lacks theoretical and empirical research focusing on the singular reality of a language that evolves within a bilingual society such as ours.
Who We Are
In the summer of 2014, a group of experts in the Spanish language decided to create the Research Institute of U.S. Spanish in response to and in recognition of a unique and unmet need: The status of Spanish used in information and communication in the United States. The founders of RIUSS are an eclectic group of highly experienced scholars, academicians, linguists, translators, interpreters, writers, communicators and marketers who believe that the importance of formal Spanish of the United States will grow nationally and internationally.
What We Do
As currently envisioned, the basic functions of RIUSS are to:
- Conduct and support evidence-based original research in reading comprehension and the common use of written U.S. Spanish
- Propose and conduct rigorous studies that contribute to understanding linguistic norms of written U.S. Spanish
- Offer webinars, forums, seminars, symposia and conferences
- Create and maintain corpora
- Create and maintain lexical (including terminological) repositories
- Serve as a clearinghouse for inter-institutional studies of written Spanish of the United States in key communication areas
- Issue scholarly reports and results of activities
- Partner with educational institutions and other research centers and institutes to promote better understanding of the role of the Spanish language in the United States
- Promote the standardization of Spanish-language terms that are unique to the United States
- Power all research with measurable data and analytic tools
Does It Matter?
It matters because RIUSS research will enable effective communication with more engaged and responsive readers.