German for 'accidental expert'?
September 1, 2007 7:24 AM Subscribe
Does anyone know the German word that means, roughly, 'accidental expert'?
posted by jack_mo to Writing & Language (7 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I was once told a word by a German speaker that describes my career path: I have no formal training for what I do, didn't study particularly relevant subjects at university, instead drifting, via a rather circuitous route, into my current occupation.
The word in question - a compound word, maybe? - translates as 'accidental expert' or, more wordily, 'one who has ended up an expert in a certain area contrary to expectations based on their initial career ambitions'. It definitely expresses a concept more complex than 'self-taught', anyway.
Any German speakers have any ideas as to the word I'm on about? I've tried chucking related terms into Babelfish and skimmed a German-English dictionary to jog my memory, to no avail...