3rd Swiss Conference on Barrier-free Communication

Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Winterthur, Switzerland

June 29 – July 4, 2020




New! Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the conference has been rescheduled to 29 June – 4 July 2020 and will be held online. In this way, the BfC 2020 Organising Committee aims to actively respond to the current emergency situation, as well as to explore more innovative ways to reach out to the barrier-free communication academic and professional community worldwide.


1. About the conference

This is the third and final conference being held as part of the project entitled “Proposal and implementation of a Swiss research centre for barrier-free communication” (2017-2020), the main goal of which is to ensure access to higher education for people with visual, hearing or temporary cognitive impairments. The project, which is a cooperation between the Institute of Translation and Interpreting of the ZHAW and the Faculty of Translation and Interpreting of the University of Geneva, is funded by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) and is supported by the Swiss University Conference.

The 1st Swiss Conference on Barrier-free Communication was held on 15-16 September 2017 in Winterthur, Switzerland. It aimed to offer both a theoretical and an empirical perspective on the state of the art in the field (cf. BfC 2017 Proceedings). One year later, the second edition of the conference, which took place in Geneva, Switzerland, on 9-10 November 2018, further explored accessibility in educational settings (cf. BfC 2018 Proceedings).

Building on the 2017 and 2018 events, the 2020 conference sets out to provide a wider international forum to discuss most recent progress and future challenges in barrier-free communication. The conference will be centred on all aspects of the field, focusing in particular on novel research findings and emerging disciplines.

Researchers, academics and practitioners from 15 different countries will present 42 papers related to the following topics:

  • Audio Description and Audio Introduction
  • Easy-to-read and Plain Language
  • Live-subtitling via keyboard and Respeaking
  • Web Accessibility
  • Sign Language
  • Community Interpreting


2. Registration

Registration is now open and will close on 22 June 2020. Please note that, due to the recent change in conference delivery format, registration fees have been reduced. You can find relevant information on the registration webpage.


3. Language accessibility

The conference language will be English. Closed captions in English will be provided for each pre-recorded video. Given the change in delivery mode, this virtual conference aims to reach out to a wider and more international audience. As we strive to meet the needs of as many sign language users as possible, all conference presentations will be interpreted in International Sign.

This conference is co-sponsored by the Swiss Association for Applied Linguistics (VALS-ASLA).

For more information, please visit the official Conference website.