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What’s on the Agenda?

Topics in British Business Meetings

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Wiebke Sponagel

This study focusses on a fundamental event within working life, the business meeting, and on a crucial field within linguistic research, the concept of topics. Both have in common that, within their worlds, they are taken for granted and ways of defining them vary greatly. So, what is a business meeting? How do topics contribute to making them? Can we define what topics are and what kinds of topics occur in a business context? The present study applies Ruqaiya Hasan’s approach of cohesive interacting chains to an authentic business meeting to deal with these questions.
Contents: What is a business meeting? The management of topics in meetings – The Systemic Functional Perspective – Hasan’s approach towards topics – Topics according to chain interaction in Introductory Meeting.