Business, Professions and Government Division

The diversity of the BPG Division is its strength as it welcomes all language practitioners working in industry, commerce, government and the professions (e.g. law, accountancy, engineering), irrespective of how they use their languages professionally.

Events are therefore diverse and determined by the needs of BPG members. In addition to face-to-face meet-ups, BPG offers members an interactive e-group, so you can stay in touch, discuss relevant issues and support your fellow linguists.

BPG members can join the e-group by contacting its co-ordinator.

Member Role Bio
Mrs Judith RIDGWAY



Judith’s life with languages started at school, where she thoroughly enjoyed French which was then superseded by German. Judith graduated from the University of Nottingham in German with French subsidiary, and looking back, Judith realises that she always wanted to use her language skills to “make things happen” in the world of industry and commerce. After a period of time in other work which improved her language skills, Judith joined the UK subsidiary of an Austrian steel company, which was to become the most worthwhile and longest-serving role of her career in industry. Judith was involved from the start in steel and nickel alloy products which were produced specifically to customers’ requirements for applications ranging from power generation to medical equipment. Ultimately Judith became Business Development Manager for aerospace products and was involved not only in developing the customer base and turnover, including many visits to Austria with customers and presentations at sales conferences, but also in initially developing a range of appropriate steel grades for UK applications and securing approvals from the major UK aerospace companies, an essential requirement for suppliers into the industry. Judith joined CIOL in 1986 as a Member and was Chair for a time of the then West Midlands Regional Society. During that time she became active in the Industry and Commerce Division (subsequently re-named Business, Professions and Government) as Treasurer and is currently Chair of the Division. Judith was elected a Fellow in 2010. Judith has served on the Council of the CIOL for some years, and is currently Chair of the Applications Committee and a member of the Finance and Executive Committee. It is her hope to continue to serve the CIOL in some capacity as the world of languages changes and evolves.

Miss Alison GARNE


Committee member None provided
Dr Luanyi Xiao


Committee member (co-opted) None provided
Dr Ivan HON


Committee member (co-opted)

Ivan Hon received his PhD from the University of Wales, MPhil and MA from the University of London, MA from Sophia University in Japan and BA from the University of Washington, USA. Ivan has had a strong interest in learning and languages since he was young. Besides English and Chinese, he also learnt Japanese, French and Korean. Ivan’s previous professional experiences include researching on the business and professional ethics at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, working in the financial management department of a Japanese electronics company and the loan department of a Japanese bank, as well as teaching commercial courses, English and Japanese at education institutes in Hong Kong. Ivan has been a CIOL member since 2010. He has been working as a freelance interpreter between English and Chinese for government agencies and public services in the London area since 2004. He also translates written English, Chinese and Japanese medical, legal and commercial materials for translation agencies in the UK. Ivan is the editor and translator of the Global China Institute as well as the language mentor and assessor of the Mary Ward Centre.



E-group Coordinator None provided
Dr Maria F ALLEN


Events Organiser None provided


Membership Secretary

James is an MCIL in French and also has Russian A-level, a Cambridge MA degree in Japanese and a working knowledge of German and Italian. From 1988 to 1993 he worked in the UK Department of Trade & Industry (DTI) on promoting UK exports to Japan. This included regular contacts with business. He did similar work (1993-1997) on secondment to the European Commission (Brussels) on behalf of all 15 EU Member States. He was involved in the initial meetings about setting up the Institute’s Regional Society there. He returned to London in 1997 and worked on UK bilateral trade relations with the Asia Pacific region and led for the DTI on the Economic Pillar of the ASEM (Asia Europe Meeting) regional dialogue. He transferred to the Department for Energy and Climate Change in 2010 and took early retirement from the civil service in March 2012. James was a member of Council from 2001 to 2009 and was re-elected to Council in March 2013 and again in March 2017. He has served on the committee of the Business, Professions & Government Division since summer 2002 and is a member of the London Society. Since August 2013 he has been Chair of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

Mr Rodney MANTLE


Minutes Secretary

After studying German and French at Oxford and Glasgow universities, Rodney worked for the BBC (International Relations); taught and tested French, German, Spanish and EFL at secondary and tertiary levels in the UK, Germany, USA and China; and undertook translation and the editing of textbooks. In 1975, Rodney joined the then IOL as a full Member, becoming a Fellow in 1987. He was an active member of Council between 1983 and 2003 helping with the divisional restructuring; taking leading roles in the Industry & Commerce (forerunner of BPG) and Education Divisions; and chairing the then Applications and Membership Committee. In 2003, Rodney moved to China (first Dalian, Liaoning Province, then Shanghai); he started testing EFL, as well as teaching French, Spanish, Latin plus Presentation Skills and Business Studies. Since returning in 2013, Rodney has given numerous presentations to CIOL Divisions and Societies and in 2015 Rodney joined the BPG Management Committee. Rodney is now active in the United Nations Association (UNA) as the Chairman of the Twickenham and Richmond Branch. One highlight was a visit to the IMO (International Maritime Organisation), the only UN agency with its HQ in the UK, for a group from BPG division. Most recently, Rodney gave a talk to CIOL members in Birmingham about linguists working at the UN in Vienna.

Mrs Beatrix METT



Beatrix is a practicing freelance translator; she owns and runs German Translation Services which was first registered in 2001, working in English into German. She has been a full Member since 1998 and a Chartered Linguist (Translator) since September 2016. In addition to her role on the Business, Professions and Government Division committee, Beatrix is also Treasurer for the Translating (TD) Division and has helped both divisions organise many interesting events and CPD activities. Beatrix says that CIOL is the place where she can share her passion for languages and politics.

Viridor runs a £205 million energy recovery and recycling facility near Bicester, processing a wide variety of materials, including plastic, wood, metal and food waste. The site does not just save a massive amount of landfill: it generates power for 38,000 homes.

It is operated and controlled by computers, which are connected by over 250 km of cabling around the plant. During the group tour, you will see the 5000-tonne bunker and learn how the facility functions. If you are curious about what happens to household waste, this visit will be for you. If you are a translator working in the field of waste management, it will offer first-hand insight into the industry. 

As Viridor is an industrial site, we have been asked by our hosts to comply with certain health and safety requirements:

  • Sturdy shoes (safety boots and other personal protective equipment will be provided, where appropriate)
  • Clothing: Long sleeves and legs covered (full-length trousers or leggings)
  • Any cuts or open wounds to be covered by waterproof plasters
  • Visitors are not allowed to bring food and drink on to the site.
  • Visitors must be able to walk 570 paces and climb 94 steps.

Our hosts have also asked us to provide emergency contact details and notify them if visitors have any health conditions that need to be taken into account. Visitors will be required to complete a brief form after registration.

Access to Viridor can be by car (it is near the M40, and parking is available on site) or by group taxi from Bicester Station. We will send full details upon registration. Should you be travelling by train to Bicester North, we are happy to co-ordinate the taxi journey from the station to Viridor. The cost is likely to be around £10.00 for 4 people. 

The day will start with refreshments at 12:00, followed by a buffet lunch. The guided tour will start at 14:00 and last about 2 hours.

Book online via Eventbrite

Date: Saturday 20 May 2017
Venue: Bicester

This is the BPG Division's Annual General Meeting. The formal part of the meeting, with reports from the Chair and other Committee members, will be followed by an open forum, allowing members to raise matters of interest or concern. There will then be a three-course lunch, closing with a talk "Language and Thought in the Multi-competent Individual" by Dr Benedetta Bassetti and/or Professor Vivian Cook.

This talk will explore how knowledge of more than one language may affect thought. Different languages represent reality differently, and there is growing evidence that speakers of different languages may ‘think’ differently. The multi-competent individual has knowledge of more than one language in the same mind. This individual, having access to more than one language, has access to more than one representation of reality. How could then multi-competence affect thought?


10:30 Tea & Coffee
11:00 Annual General Meeting
13:00 Lunch, followed by talk


Dr. Benedetta Bassetti

Dr. Bassetti is Associate Professor in Applied Linguistics, University of Warwick, is researching the psychology of bilingualism, biliteracy and second language learning, especially involving the languages she knows: Chinese, English and Italian. She has published in journals and books, co-founded a journal, obtained funding by the British Academy and the Leverhulme Foundation, co-edited volumes and journal special issues, organised events, and presented papers in the UK and abroad. She has also taught at all levels, received a Supervisor of the Year award, and held a leadership position within the White Rose Doctoral Training Centre.


Prof. Vivian James Cook

Prof. Cook is Emeritus Professor of Applied Linguistics at Newcastle University. He is renowned for his work on second language acquisition (SLA) and second language teaching and for writing successful textbooks and popular books about linguistics. He has worked on a number of topics such as bilingualism, EFL (English as a Foreign Language), first language acquisition, second language teaching, linguistics and the English writing system. He has published more than 20 books and 100 papers. He was founder and first President of the European Second Language Association (EuroSLA) and co-founder of the Oxford University Press journal Writing Systems Research.


The AGM itself is free to attend, but lunch and talk must be booked online:

Booking opens soon

Date: Saturday 24 June 2017
Venue: London

BPG has run a variety of professional development events, benefitting CIOL members and non-members alike. Click an event to see its original listing and, if applicable, event reports and downloadable materials:

Birmingham, Saturday 18 February 2017

London, Saturday 15 October 2016