Africa is experiencing explosive economic growth that will continue unabated into the next decades. Despite Africa’s economic ascendance and its paucity of native English speakers, Business English as Lingua Franca (BELF) researchers have largely bypassed it, focusing instead on Europe and Asia. BELF researchers such as Neeley (2012, 2017) and Kankaanranta & Louhiala-Salminen (2013) have declared English the world’s language of business despite contrary evidence of multilingual franca workplace settings within multinational corporations (Ehrenreich, 2009; Janssens & Steyaert, 2014; Angouri, 2014; Lüdi, Meier & Yanaprasart, 2016; Sacco, 2017, 2019, 2022). The present study explored workplace language use among 22 managers who are also studying English at a local language school. The 22 subjects represent 21 micro, small, medium, and large companies in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, which is one of the largest cities in Africa and which boasts one of the largest commerce ports on the African continent. Consequently, the key question is whether Francophone Africa will buck the trend of English as the dominant workplace language or is it simply moving slowly toward English dominance?
Sacco, Steven J. and De Koffi, Steven
"A Case Study of Workplace Language Use Within Micro, Small, Midsize, and Large Companies: Insights from Language School Students in Abidjan, Ivory Coast,"
Global Advances in Business and Communications Conference & Journal:
Vol. 9, Article 3.
Available at: https://commons.emich.edu/gabc/vol9/iss1/3