Bodour Al Qasimi at London Book Fair: Publishing must make critical changes to face the future effectively 

Bodour Al Qasimi at London Book Fair: Publishing must make critical changes to face the future effectively 

President of International Publishers Association rallies industrywide support for achieving UN SDGs, particularly climate action, inclusion and diversity     

London, April 11, 2022

The roles of publishing, and broadly culture, in achieving lasting peace during times of global conflict were among key issues addressed by Bodour Al Qasimi during her discussions with industry stakeholders at the recently-concluded London Book Fair (LBF 2022). 

The President of the International Publishers Association (IPA) also reflected on the ways in which publishers, and the wider publishing ecosystem, are uniquely positioned to drive progress towards achieving the 2030 Agenda of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

Delivering a keynote at a discussion organised by Publishers Association UK, titled The Role of Publishing and Culture during Global Conflict, Bodour Al Qasimi highlighted that during times of conflict, IPA sees its role as most effective in working with member publishers to build their resilience, ensure freedom to publish, and support them as they play a pivotal role of keeping books accessible to readers, especially out of school children and refugees. Furthermore, she emphasised the role of publishers as peacebuilders and community healers as they mobilise resources to keep books in the hands of readers and rebuild institutional collections.

Publishing, a key catalyst for achieving sustainability  

Alongside discussing the role of the global publishing community as agents of peace, IPA also leveraged LBF’s prestigious global forum to turn the world’s attention on how the sector can be a key catalyst for driving progress to accomplish the 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). At one of the three panel sessions jointly organised by the IPA and Elsevier, Bodour Al Qasimi underlined ways publishers can contribute practically and effectively to achieving the UN SDGs – not just for humans but the planet.

The IPA, she said, was going beyond words to action, to promote sustainable publishing through initiatives like the SDG Publishers Compact, which recently passed the milestone of attaining 200 signatories. Bodour Al Qasimi also shared insights from the IPA’s recently held InSPIRE Symposium, noting that participating industry experts agreed that tangible progress on sustainability was a supply chain-wide effort that required commitment from all value chain participants.     

During the opening ceremony of the book fair, the IPA President delivered the keynote speech and welcomed LBF’s global audience. The recently-concluded book fair which ran its 49th edition from April 5 – 7, hosted Sharjah as its Market Focus.


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