Professor emerita Mare Koit was granted the Wiedemann Language Prize

The Government of the Republic has decided to give the Ferdinand Johann Wiedemann Language Prize to Specialist of Language Technology, Professor emerita Mare Koit for her outstanding work as the founder and developer of Estonian language technology and computer linguistics.

Minister of Education and Research Liina Kersna congratulated and thanked the laureate. “Mare Koit is the first professor of language technology in Estonia and continues to be one of the most influential figures in the field,” said Kersna. “Thanks to her clear vision and unceasing work as a researcher and teaching staff member, Estonian language technology is at a very high level also internationally.”

Mare Koit is dedicated to developing artificial intelligence, ensuring that everything is in place to communicate with computers in natural Estonian. She has skilfully connected seemingly distant disciplines, such as linguistics and computer science, and created an active school of language technology in Estonia. She has supervised numerous dissertations in language technology and inspired students who are now actively and successfully advancing Estonian language technology themselves. Mare Koit has guided and led the field, following its development and creating international opportunities for her young colleagues.

The Wiedemann Language Prize is given to the laureate on 23 February at the national research and culture awards ceremony. The amount of the prize is 65,000 euros.

The Ferdinand Johann Wiedemann Language Prize is awarded annually to one person for outstanding merits in researching, planning, teaching, promoting or using the Estonian language. Last year, the Wiedemann Language Prize was given to Jüri Viikberg; the first laureate of the prize was Henn Saari in 1989.

In the photo, laureate of Ferdinand Johann Wiedemann Language Prize, Professor emeritus of the University of Tartu Mare Koit with President Kersti Kaljulaid. Photo by Mihkel Maripuu.

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