What is very clearly observable, once
again, is the trend of the lines between sectors, which show a pronounced down curve from
Tremp to Santa Coloma, except in the case of the Media, which are much the same
everywhere. This is logical and predictable, given that both in audio-visual media and the
press, national level distribution predominates over the local or county level.
In the same way,
the difference between the sector with the highest score, and the lowest (the media
excepted) is more accentuated as we go down. Thus, in Tremp, the gap between Education and
Health on the one hand, at 95% and Society and Leisure, at 82% is 13%; in contrast, in
Santa Coloma, between the 69% scored by Education and health, and the 20% for Economy
there is a gap of...49%!
itself somewhat from these general tendencies, the coastal resort of Lloret de Mar shows
an upturn for Public Administration, at a level above Education, and one in the opposite
direction, owing to the more pronounced downturn for Economy. If we look at the Lloret de
Mar data by subsectors or, by ambits, we can appreciate the dual nature of this locality
in Girona province: it behaves like a very Catalanised town, on the one hand (with above
average scores, for example for the Central Government Administration); but with quite low
scores in different subsectors or ambits connected with the principal economic activity of
the town, that of tourism, on the other.
To take a closer
look at this, we present figure 3, which shows the average indices in the different
localities for the principal subsectors and ambits. We have added the Ofercat mean index
for the six localities.
Figure 3. Mean
indices by subsectors and ambits, and Ofercat mean score
Here the range of
scores is even wider, going from 97% for the Generalitat, to the 22 % for the non-daily
press, a yawning difference of 75 percent.
offices and those of the Generalitat have the highest scores for presence of Catalan,
greater in every case, than the Ofercat mean. The radio stations provide the most
paradigmatic instance of this. They bolster the lower mean scores for the rest of the
media; they are precisely the part of the media regulated by the Generalitat, while the
rest of the media are regulated by central government (the Spanish state).
However, it is
important to note that Society also scores highly (76, to be exact).
Turning to the
subsectors and ambits that score below the mean, these show us where efforts should be
concentrated in the future: Economy, Administration of justice and State administration,
and the media with the exception of the radio.
Ofercat 1998 results by factors at Santa Coloma de Gramenet
Lastly, in figure
4, we show the results for the Barcelona satellite town of Santa Coloma de Gramenet, by
Here it is
worthwhile noting the contrast between the language of oral identification and the
language of oral convergence. In the first case, as we said above, a note was taken of the
language in which the different organisations addressed their customers during the initial
turn, while in the second case what was noted was the language used once the observer
addressed them in Catalan. The fifteen percent difference between the first score and the
second, in the instance of Santa Coloma, is only a nine or ten percent difference in the
other areas, but always there is a substantial difference of this sort between the two
figures: here, then we have the possibility of growth in this area, as important as it is
for oral language use.
Evaluation and prospects for the future
As we have seen,
the territorial, multisectorial and multilevel object of Ofercat's object of analysis is
innovative and is sufficiently flexible in its applicability to be applied to populations
great and small, with very different socio-economic features, as the experimentation
already carried out has shown. It enables us to analyse which are the stronger and weaker
points of the supply of linguistic products and services in a given population and allows
us to observe its evolution where Ofercat is used at regular intervals.
One of its most
notable formal features is the simplicity of the presentation of the results thus
obtained: an index (or score) and a graph for each population gives us the information at
a glance, clearly and specifically; but it also makes it possible for us to obtain 100
indices and graphs that enable us to observe a single ambit (commerce, or private
healthcare, for example), or a subsector (leisure) or the index for identification
labelling for the entire population. That is, we obtain with the exploitation of the
results, amenable working material for linguistic planning, light in form, but solid in
It is for that
reason that Ofercat has the characteristics which make it suitable to be included in a
stable programme of indicators which, looking to the future, will make it possible to
obtain data in series as in the case of census data and voting lists. Thus we will be able
to look at the evolution of knowledge of a language over time, and monitor the trends in
the supply of Catalan in our towns and cities.
It is also
important to note that, if the project is obtaining samples that are sufficiently
representative of Catalonia, we can obtain an overall picture of the supply of Catalan
over the major part of the territory.
could propose a study involving 25 towns and cities. The towns and cities chosen would
need to comply with the following criteria:
1. The universe is
confined, in principle, to settlements of 25,000 habitants or more.
2. We add 3
settlements more, two chosen from those of 10,000 inhabitants or more, of which 10% or
more are foreigners, and a third, Tremp, which formed part of the first round of field
3. We distribute
these populations in six blocks:
100,000 inhabitants (A)
50,000 and 100,000, with a low or medium low sociolinguistic index (2) (B)
50,000 and 100,000, with a high or medium high sociolinguistic index (C)
25,000 and 50,000, with a low or medium low sociolinguistic score (D)
25,000 and 50,000 , with a high or medium high sociolinguistic score (E)
towns described in point 2 (F)
To make the
selection of towns and cities we bore in mind the demographic, territorial and
sociolinguistic index factors, and the inclusion of the settlements that formed part of
the original pilot study.
As a result of the
application of these criteria the following selection emerged:
lists for the year 2000. Percentage of foreign settlers according to the 1999 voting
Ofercat is such
that it can be easily adapted to other territories where Catalan is spoken, with
sufficient supervision. Another possibility to be considered, would be to take its
development one step further and make Ofercat a tool of analysis for the servicing of a
language other than Catalan, in another part of the world where more than one language
coexist. people of different nationalities have contacted the Ofercat Commission to find
out more about this possibility. This is a new and exciting challenge.
for Language Normalisation