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InSPIRe Promises Publishing Industry a Future

The International Sustainable Publishing and Industry Resilience (InSPIRe) charter has succeeded in collecting the signatures of over 30 global book fairs, publishing trade associations, and “freedom to publish” champions to inspire a sustainable post-COVID future for the sector.

Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, President of the International Publishers Association (IPA) formed the InSPIRe plan task force to identify the main challenges posed by the pandemic in the publishing sector, and to enhance cooperation and joint future work, following the IPA’s landmark report “From Response to Recovery: The Impact of COVID-19 on the Global Publishing Industry.”

Al Qasimi comments on the signing of the charter, “Publishing is facing an uncertain recovery if the industry doesn’t come together. While developed publishing markets have fared better, emerging markets are still facing existential challenges. Not only publishers, but the livelihoods of millions of writers, illustrators, printers, book distributors and sellers will be affected by the global pandemic.”

She invited all organizations committed to positively shape the post-pandemic future of the publishing industry to join the charter, emphasizing on mutual cooperation, unity, and solidarity. “The InSPIRe charter is a formal framework for coordinated action for the entire publishing industry to learn and move forward collectively in these difficult times.”

Signatories from across the publishing ecosystem, including publishers, authors, booksellers, book fairs, academics, international reading and literacy organizations, and free expression groups have agreed to cooperate on supporting publishing’s post-COVID recovery by signing the InSPIRe charter.

The international charter is one of the most prominent achievements of the task force, as it documents the commitment of the signatories to cooperation in various fields of the publishing industry, and to work on developing a future plan for the post-pandemic phase. By endorsing the charter, the signatories have agreed to ten areas of cooperation targeting the sector’s relations with policy makers, as well as promoting dialogue and closing skill gaps.

The importance of the charter is due to the intentional inclusion of diverse sectors of the publishing ecosystem, bringing together publishing houses, book fairs, and companies specialized in printing and distribution, among others. The InSPIRe charter is a symbolic commitment to strengthen cooperation within the publishing industry in the wake of the global pandemic and to develop a scientific work approach to enhance the industry’s flexibility and sustainability.

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