FutureBook, The Bookseller's annual publishing conference, will return with an in-person event in 2021, combined with a live-stream for attendees who wish to watch the sessions remotely or on catch-up.
The theme this year is RESET, as the industry emerges from lockdown with an unprecedented chance to challenge old assumptions and processes and create real change for a more relevant and resilient industry.
Futurebook takes place on 19th November at 155 Bishopsgate, with the event and live-stream to begin at 9 a.m. culminating in the FutureBook Awards from 5 p.m. Last year's online event attracted 1,530 delegates from more than 20 countries and featured more than 100 speakers. The in-person event offers an opportunity to once again gather together with numbers strictly limited to 350 delegates; online-only delegates will be able to watch live and on catch-up, as well as participate in debates and ask questions.
The conference will focus on three areas: the digital strand, including audio and e-book publishing, will interrogate how the sector emerges from the coronavirus pandemic with panels, showcases and interviews highlighting emerging trends and lessons learned; a new section on sustainability will examine how the book trade can tackle its environmental impact, and follows publication of The Bookseller’s Climate Issue on 15th October; a third element brings "Discover" to FutureBook, a series of talks and discussions that will amplify underrepresented voices as well as the innovative work of indie publishers, activist bookshops and start-ups.
It will be co-programmed by The Bookseller's editor Philip Jones, comment editor Molly Flatt, and new associate editor Natasha Onwuemezi. Flatt said: "All of our delegates, from publishers to agents to booksellers to authors, face pivotal challenges and opportunities across each of our three streams: publishing, sustainability and discover. Whether they’re wondering how to make an activist generation evangelical about books, exploring what they need to do to revolutionise their supply chain, or struggling to empower fresh thinkers across their business, they’ll be coming to FutureBook with one big question in their mind: how can we take action now that will drive positive impact for decades to come?"
The annual FutureBook Awards are also now open for submissions, with seven awards to be announced, including the prestigious FutureBook Person of the Year. Other categories include Campaign and Team, with two new awards: one for Sustainability, and a second "Discover" award, for an initiative that addresses the lack of representation in the trade.
The Bookseller is launching the first in-person tickets at an introductory rate of £317 for all subscribers, and £335 for non-subscribers, available until Friday 17th September. This price will include full access to all events online after the conference, as well as attendance on the day. Online-only tickets will go on sale on in the following week.
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