Swedish sure does like work

Over the years, I’ve varied how I translate the Swedish use of arbete in sentences and as a modifier. Ultimately, I’ve concluded that the term is often unneeded in English since in the English its intent is included in the modified word.

A couple of examples:

Ex. 1:

“Processer och arbetssätt organiseras och resurssätts i förhållande till satta mål.”

The term arbetssätt is often translated as “work methods” but I feel that “methods” is all that is needed.

Ex. 2:

“Uppföljningar och utvärderingar kommuniceras och används som grund för utvecklings- och förbättringsarbete.”

Förbättringsarbete is often translated as “improvement work”. Here again, I feel that “improvements” is sufficient.

Clearly, using “work” isn’t wrong, but it is not very idiomatic. Some argue that “work” is crucial since it implies this is a process. I argue that’s a Swedish way of looking at the term and that most cases of arbete modifying another term are unnecessary in English.

What do you think about that?