SIBF 2019: ‘1001 Titles’ discusses new ideas with publishers to boost homegrown Arabic content
Session brought together Emirati and Arab publishers, authors and publishing industry professionals
SHARJAH - The '1001 Titles' a Sharjah-based cultural initiative has used its participation at the ongoing Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) 2019, to host a discussion between Majd Al Shehhi, Director of 1001 Titles, and several Emirati and Arab publishers, authors and publishing industry professionals.
Moderated by Tamer Said, Managing Director of Kalimat Group, the session offered its participants an opportunity to express their opinion about the initiative’s impact on the local publishing industry and its role in boosting the quality of homegrown Arabic content.
Majd Al Shehhi initiated discussions with an explanation about the initiative’s mission to support the publication of 1,001 Emirati first-edition titles, explaining that it was in line with Sharjah’s efforts to promoting books and literacy as a corner stone of development. She also noted that the initiative aims to ensure the sustainability of the publishing industry in the UAE and support UAE’s publishers to advance the local cultural output.
The participants highlighted the need for survey to measure the impact of the initiative on the number of books published locally, and stated that more business opportunities must be available especially to new and upcoming publishers.
Al Shehhi noted that meetings with publishers have better outcomes when held during international events such as SIBF. She noted that this discussion was extremely helpful in raising awareness among Emirati publishers about the key goals and efforts of 1001 Titles, and has paved the way for enabling future collaborations between the initiative and more local publishers, as the initiative is now in the know of their opinions and suggestions, and will be working towards realising them. She affirmed that 1001 Titles will be considering a plan to action the innovative and applicable ideas put forth by publishers during the discussions.
Following the success of the first phase of the initiative to publish 1,001 Emirati first-edition titles, the second phase for the year 2018–19, has selected 500 titles from amongst 1,334 entries it received from Arab and Emirati publishers.
The initiative has allocated a budget of AED 5 million to support 700 titles submitted by members of the Emirates Publishers Association (EPA), and 301 books by Emirati authors.
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