One of Australia’s Patron Saints of Words, Professor Roly Sussex, will share his thoughts at the 8th IPEd National Editors Conference in Brisbane next month.

Roly, known to ABC Radio listeners for his regular ‘A Word in Your Ear’ segment, is a multilingual comparative linguist with a passion for the histories and mysteries of words. Since graduating with a linguistics degree more than 45 years ago, Roly has been an advocate for learning and understanding languages.

In addition to English, he has specialised in Russian and Slavic languages and French, and more recently in English both in Australia and in international contexts, and in sociolinguistics and intercultural communication. He has taught linguistics in Australia and the United Kingdom. Now retired from teaching, Roly is currently Research Professor at the Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation, and the School of Languages and Cultures, at the University of Queensland. He has been Chair of the State Library of Queensland Board and President of Alliance Française of Brisbane.

Roly sees editors as a group of people who are in a position to ‘draw a line in the sand’ on language and grammar, which is increasingly complicated by the English language’s fast developing roles as national languages, and as the leading international language. The challenge is being able to see the line in the shifting sand of our language. He will share this expertise in his keynote address, including the challenges for editors working with English, a changing and multifaceted language.

Throughout the conference, Roly will enlighten, educate and entertain us with his love of words and their malleability. Register now at to reserve your place to hear Roly speak in person.