ZIMBABWE INTERNATIONAL BOOK FAIR ASSOCIATION 2015
ZIBFA OFFICES, HARARE GARDENS
30 June 2015
THEME: GROWING THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY THROUGH RESEARCH, WRITING, PUBLISHING AND READING
Members of the Zimbabwe International Book Fair Association (ZIBFA), ZIBFA General Council, Members of ZIBFA Executive Board, our funding partners, government representatives, representatives of ZIBF Stakeholders – Zimbabwe Women Writers, Zimbabwe Academic and Non-fiction Authors Association, Zimbabwe Writers Association, Zimbabwe Writers Union, Zimbabwe Book Publishers Association, Booksellers Association, Zimbabwe Library Association, Zimbabwe Universities Libraries Consortium, readers in attendance, academics, publishers, National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ), National Association of Primary Heads (NAPH) and National Association of Secondary Heads (NASH), members of the media fraternity, ladies and gentlemen,
It is an exciting opportunity at this critical moment of the book and publishing industry that I welcome you as the new Chair of the ZIBFA Executive Board. I take this opportunity to highlight our Vision, challenges of the past and this year’s events for the main edition of our 2015 Zimbabwe International Book Fair and appetise you on what the nation and the global community of publishers and writers may interface with between the days of 27th July and 1 August 2015.
Of critical importance is our theme – Growing the Knowledge Economy through Research, Writing, Publishing and Reading. The development of a knowledge-based economy is centrally linked to globalisation. It has also brought education to the forefront. Education is considered as an economic resource for nations and also as a means for individuals to advance in the context of this knowledge economy.
Growing the knowledge economy is a process which includes economic, social, political, scientific and technological dimensions in a globalised world. It is driven by a combination of processes such as increased mobility of scholars and the general public and the rapid movement of information over space which is enabled by powerful new digital technologies. In understanding the need to develop a knowledge economy in Zimbabwe, ZIBFA appreciates the idea that educators, writers, book publishers, booksellers and librarians are a service sector that can be legitimately tapped by the knowledge economic market. As such, the strategic focus of ZIBFA should be inevitably re-aligned through creating a new strategic vision and plan based on the following realities:
the need to promote knowledge management and education as an important driver of economic growth and development, in line with the global knowledge economic developments and Zim Asset blue print.
the need to develop avenues for action-oriented dialogue that promotes the exchange of ideas and innovative thinking among researchers, writers, publishers, academics, readers and Zimbabwean policy-makers.
the need to encourage and enhance research on economic and policy issues related to the development of knowledge economies.
provide an opportunity for young Zimbabwean writers and researchers to disseminate their research findings and outcomes as well as share information with the global community on knowledge based economic development.
the impact of e-education, e-library and other e-based media platforms on the book publishing industry.
the deteriorating economic performance that impacts on economic costs of book publishing, writer’s returns and welfare, market penetration and development of affordable education in line with global education and knowledge development trends.
the need to reconfigure our ZIBFA model in line with the government’s new curriculum imperatives as envisaged in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education 2015-22 Curriculum blue-print.
The new era at ZIBFA will also foster transformation through advocacy and coordinated action plans of the book industry aimed at the creation of new product types enabled by digital technologies. New publishing models are emerging in response to demand for real-time dissemination of information e.g, Open Access Model, dynamic content, more collaborative research and authoring environmentsand usage of rich media. This will see promotion of innovation where Zimbabwe will be able to develop or acquire digital technologies to publish course materials for global distribution in a way that has never been contemplated in the print era.
ZIBFA will also foster new ways for content creation and publication, help to develop alternative distribution models that broaden access, reduce costs, and enable open sharing of content.
I am also pleased to inform you that we shall actively focus on anti-piracy to promote the welfare and intellectual property rights of writers and publishers. This will require us to collectively look at new ways of curbing piracy and learn from other countries on how they protect intellectual property rights even in the face of both the print and digital knowledge economy. Prior submissions on this aspect will be consolidated and evaluated on their impacts and outcomes and fed into the new initiative to be implemented.
Focus shall also be on how to raise financial resources for ZIBFA outside traditional donor channels so that our Book Fair will be benchmarked against international best practice shown by big Fairs such as Frankfurt Book Fair and The Guadalajara Book Fair.
The ZIBFA exhibition 2015 will have the usual Writers , Publishers, Booksellers and Librarians Workshop as well as The Meet the Author Sessions, The Live Literature Centre, Children’s Reading Tent and the Digital Zone.
Let me take this opportunity to highlight some of the unique activities at the Book Fair:
The Junior Achievers Competition
The Teachers Square
The Book Voucher purchase scheme
School Prizes (Best performing schools in 2014 Exams)
Live literature – Poetry Slam/Renowned Artist
and topics to be presented at this year’s Indaba:
Research, Writing and the Creative Industries
Marketing and Distribution of Books
Intellectual Property, Copyright and Heritage Knowledge
Libraries as Temples of Knowledge
Publishing in the Digital Revolution
So far, preparations are at an advanced stage and we are receiving confirmation from several international, regional and local writers and distributors among others who will attend the Fair.
Our Secretariat will supply information and attend to the needs of the public and attending journalists.
Let me also take this opportunity to thank our partners, in particular Culture Fund in partnership with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), Norcode/Kopinor, Norwegian Embassy in partnership with HIVOS and British Council, Your support is highly valued.
I thank you all.
Chair - Executive Board
Zimbabwe International Book Fair Association (ZIBFA)