In this event, as in all books, we start with a blank page. We dive into its essence to write new lines. Lines of reflection about the best that books bring us and how they can thrive. The world is changing and so are books, which are increasingly expected to be like the world: digital, inclusive, sustainable.
What place does reading occupy in the era of the screens, in the lenses of sustainability and in the mirror of representativeness?
The covers that make us stop. The pages that hold us. The stories that capture us. The characters that amaze us.
Individually and collectively. It is a universal human right, and it is in the prescription of its daily consumption that we gain the ability to transform our lives and the world around us
Per si, a reflection of the individuals who compose it. Literacy is one of the deepest bonds that unite us. It is in its lines that flows the human knowledge that shapes the way we live and interact with each other.
*World Literacy Foundation
*Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon | **European Comission
On August 31st and September 1st 2023, Lisbon will open its doors to the first edition of what will be the biggest event to discuss the future of books in Portugal and in Europe, led by the Portuguese Publishers and Booksellers Association (APEL), which is also responsible for organizing the Lisbon Book Fair that annually gathers thousands of visitors in the capital. This first edition will be integrated in the Belém Book Fair that will take place from August 31st to September 3rd.
Books are, per excellence, the home of letters, but they are increasingly living in the world of numbers. In digital homes between zeros and ones. On the roads of gigas, megas and terabytes. The digital tsunami has profoundly transformed the literacy scenario, bringing to shore new technologies that have revolutionized the way we read and write. From Ipads to Kindles, ebooks to audiobooks, social networks and, more recently, artificial intelligence that is gaining more and more prominence in the field of books. Despite the increasing digital presence, it is in its physical composition, in its original essence, that books have been preserved throughout time. In the form of legacies. As tangible symbols of great ideas and thoughts. It has been proven that the intimacy and sensory experience of reading a printed book cannot be matched by any other form of media. Yet, will we allow its discontinuation?
The Planet is out of balance. Climate disruption is one of the biggest crises humanity is facing, requiring a profound transformation of the way we live. All business models need to be rethought, and the book industry is no exception. A clinical look at the value chain is fundamental at a time when carbon neutrality is imperative for all. How can books contribute to this planetary mission while reinforcing the power of people? We are more than 8 billion voices inhabiting this planet. Thousands and thousands remain unheard. Silenced by the force of intolerance and the power of prejudice. Books are powerful antidotes but they can gain even more strength. Exploring the path of representation is one of the great journeys on the table, not only of those who lead the way, but also of those who write and read. Will books be able to transform our world towards the SDGs?
In its early days, education served the purpose of preparing citizens to participate in public life. Today, the mission is monumental: how can it prepare us to navigate in a rapidly changing world, with enormous challenges at a global scale? The strictly cognitive view is now being asked to embrace a more holistic view of the world and the individual. On the digital waves, we are witnessing the emergence of new platforms, formats, and reading methods that are increasingly taking the place of physical books, residents, per excellence, of the classroom. We are now looking at new spaces of education, new ways of teaching and learning, which are breaking with the educational models we have always known. How can the book industry leverage this transformation and grant us the passport to the world?