2. Studies looked at
3. Basic information from each of
and regional awareness"
use in bilingual communities: Catalonia"
"Social and political situation of Catalonia"
"Use, habits and attitudes of the population of Catalonia"
"The web society in Catalonia: an empirical analysis"
Two surveys by the Institut dEstudis Regionals i Metropolitans of Barcelona
"On the linguistic behaviour of students at 52 schools in all Catalonia"
"Language and school in primary education in Catalonia"
article takes its place among the diverse range of different publications,
in many cases published in NOVES
SL, which present sociolinguistic research carried out in the
last decade in the territories where Catalan is spoken. The present
report looks at a particular type within the total range of such
studies. It specifically focuses on those research initiatives not
carried out under the auspices of the Directorate General for Language
Policy, which have the following characteristics:
- Based on
data which provide quantitative information.
- Dealing with
the whole of Catalonia or a part of the latter containing a major part of the population
- They are
specifically sociolinguistic in aim, or alternatively they deal mainly with other aspects
but include one or more questions on knowledge of Catalan or on language use.
- Carried out
between 1994 and 2002.
2. Studies looked at
with the above-mentioned characteristics were found. These were as follows:
studies which deal with the adult population in the whole of Catalonia, namely:
carried out by the CIS containing questions on language. Only one of these was more
specifically sociolinguistic in nature. The other two contained a few questions on
sociolinguistic survey not carried out by any institution, but done on the initiative of
the authors themselves.
- A large
scale survey of the so-called information society, containing several different questions
on language, and carried out by the UOC
(Open University of Catalonia)
In the case of
four of these surveys (the most significant ones) a test of the reliability of the data
has been carried out consisting in taking the number of individuals included in the sample
who were born outside Catalonia and comparing these with the figures given on this from
the latest available census. (1) In all four instances the
difference between the two figures is minimal, and so the studies pass the test. In the
case of the fifth survey, one of the CIS studies, containing little information of
relevance, it was not possible to carry out the test because of lack of data.
2. Two of the
surveys by the lInstitut dEstudis Regionals i Metropolitans in Barcelona, one
dating from 1995 and the other the year 2000. The first deals with the Metropolitan Area
of Barcelona and the other with the Province of Barcelonia. Here, too, the reliability
test was carried out with satisfactory results.
3. Two surveys
of the school population.
consider the main features of each of these surveys. A file was created for each of the
works in question, except in the case of the two carried out by the Institut
dEstudis Metropolitans, which were grouped together in a single file because of
their similarity. In all cases the following aspects, at least, are looked at: the aims
and objectives, the methodology, the planned exploitation of the information, the most
significant sociolinguistic results and how to gain access to the information.
3. Basic information of each of the surveys
3.1. "Conciencia nacional y regional"
(National and regional awareness)
This reports a
survey which covers the whole of the Spanish State, that is, both Catalonia and the rest
obtain information on the language afiliation and associated identity of the population
and the incidence (social presence) of the coofficial languages.
The sample and data collection
sample of 2,500 individuals throughout Spain, was enlarged in the six Autonomous Regions
with a cooffical language, so that the final sample of 4,932 subjects was not
pro-portional, and coefficient weightings are therefore necessary. The universe in
question was individuals aged 18 or over, and the data were collected at the end of 1996.
The sampling method used was multistage, stratified by groups, with random proportional
selection of the primary units (the municipal areas) and of the secondary units (censoral
divisions), and of the ultimate units (individuals) by random routes and quotas of gender
and age groups. The primary units were selected by constructing strata formed by the
crossing of 17 Autonomous Regions with 7 categories of size of habitat. The questionnaires
were administered in personal interview in the subjects' homes.
questionnaire there are a series of questions which are asked in all areas and others
which are asked in certain Communities (Autonous Regions) and not in others. Questions
about the language or languages used are asked only in the six above-mentioned Autonous
Regions. These relate to knowledge of Catalan, to mother tongue of speaker, and to
language learning, as well as language use at home, when shopping, when talking to local
or central government officials, at the workplace, with friends, with a stranger, and when
answering the telephone. Another question was the language in which subjects watched
television, listened to the radio and read the newspaper.
It has to be
said that some of the questions on language use are confusing, such as the question
"¿Habla, lee o entiende la lengua propia de su Comunidad Autónoma?" (Do you
speak, read or understand the language of your Autonomous Community?). Furthermore, the
study invariably distinguishes between Catalan, Valencian, and Majorcan/Balearic, which
gives rise to errors, as in the case of Majorca where those who have the language of their
community as mother tongue cannot include the 11% who give Catalan as the answer to the
corresponding question. Only those whose response is Majorcan are included, which clearly
skews the results.
the Catalonia survey
There were 747
individuals in the sample. In this instance it has not proved possible to check whether
the sample passes the born-outside-Catalonia test, for lack of the relevant information.
exploitation of the data relating to Catalonia
results that give data for all of the above-mentioned six communities and therefore for
Catalonia, are those precisely relating to the language. Only the results of the questions
have been made known, with no information on cross-tabulation between variables.
results relating to Catalonia
confusing items we have just mentioned, the results seem not to be totally off target,
since for example the proportion of those questioned who claimed that Catalan was their
initial (that is, first) language was 40%, a figure which is similar to the one arrived at
in other surveys carried out soon after or not long before. (2) At all events, this study does
not offer any information of especial interest or relevance.
access to the information
statistical findings of this survey may be found in the following CIS publications:
poll, CIS, 9 (this publication, which contains results of the language use questions, can
be consulted from March 2003 at the CIS Website).
- Opinions and
attitudes, CIS, 18 and 26
- Reis 88,
What is more,
as with the rest of the surveys carried out by the CIS, the data can be bought from CIS as
3.2. "Uso de lenguas en comunidades bilingües: Cataluña"
(Language use in bilingual communities: Catalonia)
information on knowledge, use and language attitudes, as well as information on collective
identities and other social questions, in Catalonia. This work forms a part of a series of
6 similar surveys, each one devoted to one of the autonomous communities with a
is the population of Catalonia aged eighteen or over, and the sample consists of 1,006
individuals from whom data were collected in October 1998. The sampling procedure, as
before, was multistage, stratified or broken down into groups, with random proportional
selection both at primary (municipal) level and at secondary level (census divisions) with
quotas for gender and age. Distribution of the sample was proportional, so that there was
no need for weighting coefficients. Data was obtained by means of personal interview at