By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson
Al Hassani: ‘An Inclusive Program’The 13th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair‘s professional Publishers Conference has been announced today (September 18) with dates of October 29 to 31.
News of this event is always of interest to many in the international publishing trade because it occurs a week after Frankfurter Buchmesse (October 18 to 22), this year drawing what organizers say will be publishers, distributors, and other book-business specialists from 101 markets. The program, in fact, anticipates the debut appearances at the Sharjah Publishers Conference of seven countries: Benin, Ivory Coast, Czech Republic, Mauritius, Paraguay, Burkina Faso, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The public-facing fair itself is in its 42nd edition this year, running November 1 to 12, with South Korea as its guest of honor. And as it approaches its 15th year of operation, the evolution and growth in the Sharjah pre-fair professional program has been notable, the program having graduated from what for years was an event at Sharjah’s chamber of commerce to a staging of business-driven programming and rights meetings at hundreds of tables.
Publishing Perspectives understands that this year’s program will include some of the topic-specific round-table discussions that were featured in Emma House’s programming of the May Booksellers Conference at Sharjah, a format that generated intensive small-group training sessions and exchanges without causing the plenary audience to adjourn to separate rooms. The approach has the interesting effect of bringing together publishing players from many markets according to their shared interests in issues and challenges.
‘The Needs and Expectations of Publishers’
With special emphasis on developments in digital publishing and audio, the conference this year will also be in its second iteration of the still-new Sharjah Rights Connection Awards, one for translation-rights employees in publishing houses and one for independent rights professionals and literary agents who work in the international rights arena. Submissions for these awards closed on August 31.
In a prepared statement for today’s announcement, Mansour Al Hassani, director of publisher services with Sharjah Book Authority, is quoted, saying, “In the 13th consecutive year of the Publishers Conference, we present an inclusive program that meets the needs and expectations of publishers from various countries, cultures, and languages. This reflects the Book Authority’s visionary commitment to supporting and developing the publishing industry; nurturing cultural content in the region and the world; our belief in the importance of exchanging ideas, solutions, and opportunities between publishers; and keeping pace with the technological advancements that impact the publishing industry.”
“The Sharjah International Book Fair Publishers Conference stands out as a platform for networking and communication, attracting literary agents, translation experts, and intellectual property rights professionals from both the local region and the world.
“This global event serves as a source of inspiration, spurring participants to continue their dedicated work in the publishing sector.”
More from Publishing Perspectives on Sharjah Publishers Conference is here, more on Sharjah Book Authority and its programming is here, and more on publishing trade shows, book fairs and conferences internationally is here.