Community

Our community work

Dr Neil James has served as both President and Vice President of the Plain Language Association InterNational (PLAIN). We sponsor and take part in PLAIN's biennial conference, as well as conferences with hosts like:

See our Think tank for key conference papers. 

Advancing our profession

From 2008 to 2015, Neil also chaired the International Plain Language Working Group, developing:

  • a highly anticipated options paper
  • a common definition for plain language.

Award judging

We love seeing organisations succeed in adopting plain language, and helping to celebrate their efforts.

We have helped to judge the:

The 12th International PLAIN Conference in Oslo was a great success.
Neil received the Christine Mowat Plain Language Achievement Award.
Neil received the Christine Mowat Plain Language Achievement Award.
This spectacular theatre at the University of Oslo hosted pre-conference talks.
This spectacular theatre at the University of Oslo hosted pre-conference talks.
PEF sponsored Gérman Arias, Prof Christian Anker and Prof Claudia Andrea Poblete Olmedo to attend PLAIN 2019.
PEF sponsored Gérman Arias, Prof Christian Anker and Prof Claudia Andrea Poblete Olmedo to attend PLAIN 2019.
Neil's closing keynote explored the positive impacts plain language has had over the past decade.
Neil's closing keynote explored the positive impacts plain language has had over the past decade.
Neil's closing keynote explored the positive impacts plain language has had over the past decade.
Neil's closing keynote explored the positive impacts plain language has had over the past decade.
The best part of PLAIN conferences is meeting inspiring people from around the world.
The best part of PLAIN conferences is meeting inspiring people from around the world.
Neil with PLAIN President Margrethe Kvarenes, a manager at the Language Council of Norway.
Neil with PLAIN President Margrethe Kvarenes, a manager at the Language Council of Norway.

Our media work

Neil regularly contributes to The Mandarin on the importance of clear communication. His series includes strategic models for reform and what distinguishes plain English editing. He also reveals the lighter side of language on radio.

See On air and in print for his collected work.

In our campaign for ethical public language, we highlight spin, doublespeak, jargon, frankenwords and other nasties in our annual Worst Word of the Year list. Share your finds with us on Facebook or Twitter.

Defining plain language

A communication is in plain language if its wording, structure and design are so clear that the intended audience can easily find what they need, understand what they find and use that information.

International Plain Language Working Group

Our conference

Our PLAIN 2009 conference in Sydney hosted over 300 people from 14 countries.

The conference gave us 45 fascinating sessions with expert speakers.

See our archive.

Program

Photos

Videos