The aims of the society are:
- to awaken the interest and further the awareness of linguists in the history of their discipline, with a particular focus on the Pacific region;
- to give the history of linguistics both within the subject and outside it – in disciplines such as history, anthropology, archaeology – a higher profile in the Pacific region and internationally;
- to encourage the production of critical editions of important documents in the history of linguistics in the Pacific region;
- to stimulate the investigation of indigenous and post-colonial traditions in linguistics;
- to encourage awareness of the principles and practices of linguistic historiography;
- to serve as an interdisciplinary forum for dialogue within the international community of historians of linguistics.
The main activities of the society are:
- to hold biennial conferences, the first in 2008;
- to establish a newsletter and electronic forum for exchange of ideas and information.