Looking for a new source of engineering and science talent? Approximately 420 million people around the world speak Arabic. And with new pushes to educate different Arabic-speaking populations and bring more people into the higher education fold, Arabic translation services and engineering translations from English into Arabic will have a significant role to play in the future software development, manufacturing and engineering endeavors of the Arabic-speaking world.
Education, Science and the Arabic Language
From Al-Khwarizmi, the Persian scholar living in Baghdad in the 9th Century and writing in Arabic, whose work eventually brought algebra and Hindu-Arabic numerals to Western mathematics, to the Banu Musa brothers (also working out of Baghdad) and their Book of Ingenious Devices, as well as their Book on the Measurement of Plane and Spherical Figures (a significant work in the field of geometry), the Arabic language had been integral in spreading knowledge around the globe.
In the modern era, in the context of Arabic translation and localization, people like Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ruler of Dubai, are pushing for broader science education with initiatives like his Arabic eLearning Project and Translation Challenge. These projects aim to translate thousands of science videos and 11 million words worth of scientific educational materials into Arabic (a great opportunity for Arabic translation services). Once translated, these materials will be provided to more than 50 million Arab students online, absolutely free of charge. “Translation is the foundation of a cultural renaissance, and opens the doors to intellectual enlightenment,” Sheikh Mohammed said about these educational initiatives.
Science and Engineering in the Middle East
Another fascinating development in the Arabic-speaking world is the advanced education of girls and women, a trend international engineering firms and any manufacturing translation service working with these firms should pay attention to. According to a recent report from The Atlantic, girls do better than boys in “math, engineering and computer-information systems” at school and in universities in the Middle East by a larger margin than almost anywhere else on the planet.
Women educated in engineering and science, and their acceptance in the workplace, means many Arab nations will have a vastly increasing repository of technical brain power. This fact could change the volume of engineering translations from English into Arabic in the future, based on where the future growth of programmers and engineers might be, and the types of projects they’re working on.
Even in Saudi Arabia where women will finally very soon be permitted by law to drive cars, “women earn half of all science degrees.” And while educated women actively taking part in the workplace en masse in the region is far from guaranteed right now, times do change, and workforces (and their composition) tend to change with them.
Engineering Firms and Arabic Translation Services
From shifts in the sociocultural fabric, to grand engineering projects, the Middle East is an exceedingly dynamic place. The need for translation and localization in the business and engineering spheres will likely increase in the Arabic-speaking world, alongside strong population growth.
“Infrastructure projects need to be developed for healthcare, housing, commercial needs and transportation as the population throughout the region continues to rise and put a strain on existing frameworks,” Jesus Sancho, Acciona’s Middle East director, told The National in a recent interview. In others words, as populations — and the educated segments of those populations available to work — expand in the Middle East, work for international engineering companies — and the engineering and manufacturing translation services they rely on — will increase as well.
The Middle East was the cradle of civilization at the turn of the second millennium. Countless translations of ancient Greek and Latin manuscripts into Arabic and then from Arabic to other languages helped preserve much of the treasures destroyed during Europe’s Dark Ages. Although the Middle East suffered huge setbacks since its heydays, times are changing and a renaissance is in the works in many parts of its modern presence. All ongoing technical translations, specifically in software, engineering and manufacturing subjects, will help accelerate the areas’ rebirth.
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