During several visits to the Chiquitania in Bolivia, the PDP has compiled a corpus video and audio data in the Paunaka language with the remaining ten speakers Narratives and personal life stories are the main components of the interviews, accompanied by conversation between several speakers, small talk with the interviewers, and elicitation. In addition, anthropological data is gathered in Spanish. The interviews are transcribed in Elan and Transcriber. The linguistic interviews are then analyzed with the help of Toolbox and TypeCraft. Linguistic structures are compared to those of related languages and also unrelated languages of the region. In comparison with other South-Arawakan languages, we notice that Paunaka has experienced strong influence of Spanish over the last three centuries. The research on areal structures will be intensified in the future.

Furthermore, the project is compiling word lists of older monographs and articles where the language Paunaka was described and recognized for the first time. Especially plant and animal species have been documented extensively. The word lists are entered into a separate Toolbox dictionary to compare the different words and ways of spelling. Based on these comparisons, one can see the early attempts of textualization and the variety of vocabulary.

Together with the speakers, the PDP has agreed on an orthography for In September 2011,the PDP organized the workshop “Iniciativas con la lengua paunaka entre los chiquitanos (2011-2013)” for the Paunaka speakers and their relatives in the Chiquitania. One of the aims of the workshop was the compilation of an orthography, which should be represented in an alphabet book. For this purpose, speakers compiled lists of words and discussed their spellings and the children drew different images of landscapes and wildlife in their environment. These served as illustrations of the book with the title “El alfabeto Paunaka”. The PDP has printed a first edition. The book provides introductions to the language and to the project. The main part is the Paunaka alphabet and each letter is accompanied by some words beginning with this letter together with a drawing of a child. The search for additional speakers or even villages where Paunaka is spoken will continue.

The first collection of Paunaka stories was compiled by Swintha Danielsen in 2009 and can be downloaded here: Cuentos y relatos en la lengua Paunaca (PDF)

A summary of the workshop with the Paunaka speakers can be downloaded here: Summary