Consecutive interpretation is generally used when it is not possible or suitable to use simultaneous interpreting equipment. In this form of interpreting, the interpreter takes notes while the speaker speaks for a few sentences or a few minutes. When the speaker stops, the interpreter conveys what was said into the other language.
Requiring specialized note-taking technique, a strong memory and public speaking skills, consecutive interpreting is in fact one of the most difficult branches of conference interpreting. Consecutive interpreting is widely used in face-to-face diplomatic meetings, which touch on all aspects of international relations and are often highly confidential.
Another context in which consecutive interpreting is frequently used is arbitration hearings. Consecutive interpreting is sometimes preferred to simultaneous interpreting in such hearings to allow the arbitrators to hear the fluency and intonation of the parties involved in the hearing as they give their statements. With an understanding of arbitration procedures and legal knowledge, Enterkon’s interpreters have proven themselves by providing consecutive interpreting in a high number of international arbitration hearings.
Consecutive interpreting is also widely used in audits and conformity inspections. Additionally, consecutive interpreting is regularly used in situations where audience numbers are too large to provide headphones to everyone, for after-dinner speeches, and for official visits.