'Publishing in digital age' investigated by parliamentary group

'Publishing in digital age' investigated by parliamentary group

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Publishing has launched an investigation into 'UK Publishing in a Modern Digital Age', with the aim of ensuring the industry is "properly developed and supported" by UK government.

The two-fold inquiry will start with a roundable on "soft power" on 25th April to consider "what the global cultural landscape [would] look like without a successful UK publishing sector". 

Parliamentarians and external speakers from organisations including the UK Film Council, British Council, UKTI, IPO and International Publishers Association, as well as individual publishers, have been invited to the meeting to examine the industry’s influence - its contribution to the UK economy and society - and to discuss whether the UK government is "doing enough to reap the benefits the sector has to offer".

The second part of the investigation will look into the evolving digital landscape of UK publishing, considering how publishing - already made available in a wide variety of digital formats - is developing innovative ways of delivering engaging and accessible content that can be enjoyed by everyone.

Iain Wright MP, chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Publishing, said: “The UK publishing industry is undoubtedly an international success story. From Bond to Harry Potter, from Matilda to War Horse, via the entire works of Shakespeare and Jane Austen, UK literary works have a long history of transcending the written word on the page and reaching audiences around the world. Our scientific research community punches well-above its weight and when students overseas wish to study English, they more often than not use UK-produced books to do so. 

“What the All Party Group is keen to uncover is whether this success is being properly harnessed. Is there more that the government could be doing? Or indeed the publishing community and its partners? We want to challenge both the industry and our lawmakers in order to ensure that the UK’s global success is properly developed and supported.”