IPA News

16 Jun 2010

We regret to announce the death of the President of the International Phonetic Association, Professor Gösta Bruce. He was elected president in 2007.

A message received from Lund University informs us that he died on Tuesday 15th June 2010 following a short illness.

We extend our condolences to his family, colleagues, and many friends around the world.

(To make a contribution towards a memorial fund administered by the IPA, click here.)

1 Sep 2005

In April 2005, the IPA Council received a formal request to vote on the adoption of a standard IPA symbol for the labiodental flap. The request was made by Dr Kenneth S. Olson, Associate International Linguistics Coordinator, SIL International, and was supported by Professor Peter Ladefoged, a member of the IPA Council.

In his letter of request, Dr Olson provided justification for the need for a standard IPA symbol for the labiodental flap. He stated that 'research has shown that the labiodental flap is quite widespread in Africa. It is attested in at least seventy languages and is fully incorporated into the phonological system of at least twenty languages. A standard IPA symbol would be a tremendous benefit for facilitating research on the sound'.

The IPA Council voted in favour of the adoption of a symbol for the sound. Following discussion and a further vote of Council, the symbol adopted was the 'right-hook v', ⱱ, which combines a 'v' and a fish-hook 'ɾ', suggesting a voiced labiodental sound and a tap/flap articulation.

The labiodental flap will be included in the next edition of the IPA chart; it will also be incorporated in Unicode and included in the SIL fonts.