members muleta urbadoc


Multilingual and Multimedia Tool on Environment, Town and Country Planning, Building and Architecture

Subject Area:   European electronic forum for terminology
Duration:   18 months
Founded:   The Project is founded be the European Commission, DG XIII under the MLIS (Multilingual Information Society) programme.


In 1995, 5 institutions from different European Countries founded the URBANDATA Association, with the aims to spread scientific, technical and cultural information on urban planning, transport, environment, architecture and building; to develop common products and facilities; to promote exchanges between national, European and international institutions and to develop other co-operative action on related matters.

URBANDATA members produce 10 bibliographic databases, distributed both online and on CD-ROM. The databases as a whole are distributed through the URBADISC CD-ROM, with more than 625,000 bibliographical references to documents on urban and regional planning, environment, architecture and building. Such joint activity has emphasised the communication obstacles that arise because of language and culture differences - chiefly when dealing with a specialised subject context, as does URBANDATA. At a national level, members have developed lexicons and thesauri for specific subjects, and within URBANDATA, they have prepared preliminary products such as bilingual dictionaries (English-French, French-Spanish and vice-versa) that emphasise the need and the importance of such a global aid to international communication.

The MULETA project will produce a multilingual and multimedia tool, based on a lexical database of urban planning, environment, architecture and building. The first five languages chosen are French, English, German, Italian and Spanish. Other European languages will be added to the project when new partners are found.

MULETA aims are to provide:

  • an aid to fast and accurate translation (text area);

  • a brief description of the meaning of each word or concept in each language (text area);

  • an image (where appropriate) to better explain the meaning (image area);

  • the proper pronunciation of words in the different languages (sound area).

MULETA's potential end users are all citizens involved in work, study and research activities in the relevant fields, such as building contractors and building sector firms, CAD & GIS software companies, professionals, university teachers, researchers and students, local authorities, research centres, boards, associations and industries involved with planning and building. Once marketed and sold to these users, MULETA will facilitate immediate trans-lation of a specific word or concept into other languages, thus enabling a full understanding of its meaning (definitions and explanatory images) and the exact pronunciation.

MULETA can play an active role in promoting exchanges, cultural policies and study and research activities at the European level, in line with EU policies.

Principal actions to be undertaken are:

  • analysis of potential market including likely users (civil engineers, architects, planners, local authorities, academics);

  • study of existing lexical resources - choice of subject themes for the lexicon - choice of the key language - definition of database functions - creation of the database structure;

  • evaluation and testing of functionality;

  • development and implementation of the working database using WEB technologies;

  • translation: selection of words or terms - translation into five languages - validation;

  • preparation of data: editing of definitions - choice of possible quotations and sources - selection of images - sound recording - prototype of the definitive database;

  • publishing, dissemination and sales: creation of a public WEB site to enhance the database - development of a CD-ROM - development of related products (such as publications) and appropriate distribution channels.



   Role    Country
Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik C DE
Centre de Documentation de l'Urbanisme (Department of Ministère de l'Equipement) P FR
Centre d'Etude Technique de l'Equipement du Sud-Ouest P FR
Centro de Information y Documentation Cientifica (Department of Consejo Superior de Investigationes Cientificas) P ES
EUROGONE Technologies Avancées P FR
Institut d'Amenagement et d'Urbanisme de la Region d'Ile-de-France P FR
Instituto Universitario di Architettura di Venezia P IT
Greater London Authority, Information Services P UK


Contact Person

Susanne Plagemann
Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik
Head of Department Information
Strasse des 17 Juni, 112
D-10623 Berlin
Tel : +49.(0)30.39001274
Fax : +49.(0)30.39001275
E-mail : plagemann@difu.de

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