The British Council and the Oxford English Dictionary sponsored a discussion with an expert panel on Thursday 27 September 2012. The event considered issues such as:

  • Does ‘standard English’ exist in today’s globalised society?
  • Who regulates the language – lexicographers, the education system, the media – or the public?
  • Is the language being dumbed down? And does this matter?
  • Should we be worried about the state of English today?

John Knagg, Head of English Research at the British Council chaired the discussion with these panel members:

  • John Simpson, Chief Editor, Oxford English Dictionary
  • Romesh Gunesekera, novelist
  • Henry Hitchings, journalist and author of The Language Wars
  • Prudence Raper, former Hon Secretary of the Queen’s English Society