PASSAGE: Subtitling of Swiss German into Standard German


This project aims to develop, in collaboration with SRF and recapp IT, an automatic post-editing system to improve the quality of automatic German subtitling of Swiss German television programs. It has three main objectives. The first one is to compare different methods of automatic post-editing for this task, the second one is to collect the opinions of users on this type of transcription in order to generate subtitles that are as accessible as possible, and the third one is to share written and oral resources to promote research on Swiss German in the field of media.

Automatic post-editing will be done using modern Machine Translation (MT) techniques. On the scientific level, this project contributes to research on poorly endowed languages, on automatic post-editing, especially with new neural methods, and on the understandability of this type of transcription. In addition, it has a strong societal impact, as it aims to make television more accessible by subtitling programs in Swiss German and making them available in standard German for people who do not speak Swiss German or who suffer from a hearing impairment. This project therefore complies directly with the new legal requirements for accessibility in Europe and falls squarely within the multilingual context of Switzerland, offering solutions to promote linguistic diversity, multilingual cohesion and cultural exchange, which is also the primary mission of the media.

Now, the Department of Translation Technology (TIM) of the University of Geneva has set up a demo page to test the automatic post-editing API that will later become available to media partners.

Project presentations

“PASSAGE : sous-titrage automatique du suisse allemand en allemand standard” project presentation (2022)
“PASSAGE : sous-titrage automatique du suisse allemand en allemand standard” project presentation (2023)
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Watch on YouTube

Keywords :
Swiss German, poorly endowed language, automatic subtitling, automatic post-editing, accessibility, neural machine translation
Original title

“PASSAGE : sous-titrage automatique du suisse allemand en allemand standard”


24 months

People involved

Principal investigator

Prof. Pierrette Bouillon (UNIGE)



Johanna Gerlach (UNIGE)

Silvia Rodríguez Vázquez (UNIGE)

Jonathan David Mutal (UNIGE)

Prof. Alexander Künzli (UNIGE)



Veronika Haberkorn (UNIGE)

Simge Yildiz (UNIGE)

Mirjam Sutter (UNIGE)


Media experts

Florian Notter (SRF)

Damian Murezzan (SRF)

Christian Vogg (SRG SSR)


Industry expert

David Imseng (recapp IT)

Academic institution

Department of Translation Technology – TIM (UNIGE)

Media partner

SRF – Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRG) – Documentation and Archives (D+A)

Industry partner

recapp IT


This project started in November 2020 and has been completed

Related call for projects

IMI Research Grant (April 2020)