Austin Macauley Publishers and the Nairobi International Publishers Association Seminar. Africa Rising: Realising Africa’s Potential as a Global Publishing Leader in the 21st Century.

We were delighted to be a sponsor for such an innovative seminar this June, together with many key organisations in our community, to name a few; Emirates Publishers Association, Sharjah World Book Capital, Association of American Publishers, Liberty Education UK, Nielsen, The London Book Fair, Emaar and Emirates.

Our minds were broadened by the endless possibilities and progressions the publishing communities within Africa put across. Opinions and insights were provided from the likes of publishers, authors, supporting organisations and governing bodies. Global representatives shared their support and cooperation with the African countries and their mission to transform the future of African publishing.

The seminar featured keynotes by globally renowned authors, decision makers, and industry thought leaders; in addition to panel sessions and workshops on themes addressing the most pressing challenges facing the African publishing industry. These discussions ranged from the importance of copyright protection, the threats of self-censorship and piracy, to the struggle of preserving indigenous languages and development of supporting data for publishing industries.

Africa is home to an incredible amount of spoken languages, a key part of the seminar looked into the progression that has already began in publishing for these native speakers. This diversity is also shared in other continents. Six out of ten children globally are not taught in their mother tongue, causing their learning process to be hindered immediately when they begin education.

Recent growth in technology has benefitted all nationalities by developments in online translations, and by fault, causing many positive impacts on accessing the indigenous languages of Africa. The goal of gaining a one to one textbook to pupil ratio is developing into the goal of every child in Africa having access to a textbook and digital teaching aid. The support of technology has potential to combat many difficulties, that schools in particularly, face when trying to educate.