Please don’t make me write “surrounding society”

The phrase “omkringliggande samhället” is what my friend Mandy calls a nasty of the translation world. It hides a multitude of meaning, intent, possibilities and pitfalls, many of which just sound down right awful in English. I have found myself doing summersaults to avoid writing “surrounding society”, sometimes unsuccessfully. Now I’ve finally found an elegant solution. Turn what is being said around.


Våra analyser kanske inte alltid kommer att – hur mycket vi än vill det – spridas till det omkringliggande samhället direkt, men erfarenheten visar att så brukar ske med viss tidsfördröjning.


While our insights may not always spread beyond academia immediately, as much we might want them to, experience shows that they tend to have an impact over time.

It almost feels like cheating but is infinitely better than the alternatives I’ve seen so far.

I’ve also been quite free with the rest of the translation, but I think it does the sentiments justice.

What do you think?