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Linguist Joaquín Gorrochategui, winner of the Euskadi Research Award 2023

2024 May 21
  • Professor Gorrochategui is Emeritus Professor of Indo-European Linguistics at the UPV/EHU.

The Euskadi Research Award 2023 has been granted to Professor Joaquín Gorrochategui, Professor of the Department of Classical Studies at the UPV/EHU, in the subject area of Indo-European Linguistics. The 28th edition of the award ceremony, composed of four members of recognised prestige in the field of Social Sciences and Humanities, has unanimously agreed to award the Euskadi Research Prize 2023 to the linguist Joaquín Gorrochategui Churruca, after their meeting this morning in Bilbao. As soon as the jury's decision was announced, the Regional Minister of Education, Jokin Bildarratz, let the winner know by phone.

The Euskadi Research Prize is awarded every year by the Department of Education. In odd-numbered years, as is 2023, the prize is awarded in the area of Social Sciences and Humanities, while in even-numbered years it is dedicated to the recognition of the work of professionals in the area of Science and Technology. The aim of the Euskadi Research Award is to encourage scientific activity, to stimulate, promote and value the efforts of qualified researchers and teams from the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country or from outside the Autonomous Community, whose work has had a significant positive influence on the Basque Country.

Joaquín Gorrochategui Churruca

Professor Joaquín Gorrochategui Churruca (Eibar, 1953) works in the field of historical linguistics, focusing his activity on research into the linguistics of ancient Western Europe and the Iberian Peninsula in particular, and always combining linguistic and historical data.

Joaquín Gorrochategui holds a PhD in Classical Philology from the University of Salamanca (1982), with a doctoral thesis on indigenous onomastics in Aquitaine directed by Koldo Mitxelena. Later, he completed postdoctoral studies in Bonn (Germany), where he specialised in Celtic linguistics, and continued his research career working as a visiting professor in foreign academic institutions such as the University of Wales in Aberystwyth, l'École des Hautes Études de la Sorbonne, the Tor Vergata University in Rome, and the Institut Ausonius in Bordeaux.

Professor Gorrochategui has developed several branches of research over the last decades, all of them with the shared feature of interdisciplinarity between linguistics, epigraphy and history. This is a feature determined in part by the field of study to which he has devoted his work (that of the pre-Roman languages of the Iberian Peninsula), but also by a conscious decision to unify methodology. It had a particular focus on the study of the oldest stages of Basque language, documented in the onomastic remains of southern Aquitaine and the north of the Iberian Peninsula, extending to other periods of the language (medieval onomastics).  Another important study was centred around the research of the ancient Indo-European languages of the Iberian Peninsula, specifically Celtiberian and Lusitanian, bilingualism and linguistic contact in Antiquity, which includes contacts between pre-Roman languages (Old Basque and Iberian, Aquitanian and Gaulish), as well as between these and Latin.

According to the panel of judges for this edition, the work carried out by Professor Gorrochategui has inspired new generations of researchers in the Basque Country, leading to the creation of a scientific school for the study of the evolution of different languages (from Celtic to Slavic and even non-Indo-European languages in addition to Basque).

He also worked as Director of Hesperia, the online databank on Paleo-Hispanic Languages and Epigraphies, and has been recognised as a full member of Jakiunde, a corresponding member of Euskaltzaindia and of the Royal Spanish Academy, and his role as a member of the Board of Trustees of Ikerbasque, the Basque Foundation for Science.

Finally, Joaquín Gorrochategui has been very involved in sharing his knowledge in the Basque society in the subjects of his field of study and research, highlighting his participation as a specialist in charge of the reading and interpretation of the inscription of the Hand of Irulegi, in 2022.

Besides the excellent scientific work of Professor Gorrochategui Churruca, the jury considered the most noteworthy elements of his career to be the robustness and excellence of his academic, research and teaching career, as well as his contribution to the training of researchers, reinforcing the prestige of the school created by Professor Mitxelena, of whom he has been a disciple and follower. His participation in expert networks and in numerous international projects and university scientific initiatives is also worthy of note. Therefore, according to the panel of judges, his merits and contributions to the Basque science system, within the field of Humanities, contribute to the prestige of the Basque scientific community in the international field of palaeolinguistics.

3 comments
  • Photo SN Robot
    @EHUargitalpenak
    2024 May 22

    Comentario de X:
    El lingüista Joaquín Gorrochategui, Premio Euskadi de Investigación 2023 https://t.co/gz8NAzaUXj

  • Photo SN Robot
    @LinguisticsEHU
    2024 May 21

    Comentario de X:
    Joaquin Gorrotxategi irakasleak 2023ko Euskadi Ikerketa Saria irabazi du @Gob_eus. Euskarari, hizkuntzalaritza historikoari eta hizkuntzalaritza indoeuroparrari buruz egindako ekarpen bikainengatik.
    https://t.co/upKppEMiAI

  • Photo SN Robot
    @LinguisticsEHU
    2024 May 21

    Comentario de X:
    Prof. Joaquin Gorrotxategi has been awarded the Euskadi Research Award 2023 given by the Basque Government for his excellent contributions on historical linguistics and Indoeuropean linguistics
    https://t.co/wrLrHmfvrB

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Politicians attending the event