How can the book publishing industry become more sustainable? That was the focus of our recent Future Book Forum, where hundreds of publishing industry professionals gathered virtually to seek ideas and inspiration to help their businesses operate more sustainably.
Now in its ninth year, the event was hosted online for the second time from our Canon Customer Experience Centre in Poing near Munich, and welcomed viewers from more than 55 countries.
Inspirational speakers share real-world sustainability gains
Global author and speaker, Peter Fisk, again chaired the event and was joined by experts in sustainability, innovation and publishing. Together we explored the opportunities that sustainability offers for businesses to drive smarter innovation and profitable growth. From the response we received, this year’s speaker programme was a great source of motivation for an industry that acknowledges the need to adopt more sustainable practices. Our guest speakers inspired and encouraged attendees with practical guidance on more sustainable ways of doing business.
One such speaker was Jessica Lobo from the United Nations, who delivered a keynote presentation on ‘Why sustainable innovation matters?’. In her presentation, she delved into why the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals are both important and relevant in publishing and shared tools and real-life examples that attendees could take away and put into practice in their own organisations. “By using innovation, particularly by using sustainable innovation, organisations can really scale up impact, can really drive transformational change and unlock market opportunities,” she explained.
It was also fascinating to hear about Andy Hunter’s plans to roll out a new retail initiative in Europe that is focused on e-commerce for independent bookstores. The founder and CEO of bookshop.org also spoke about his company’s business model and the role played by digital printing in fulfilling his company’s promise to improve sustainability.
Otava Printing’s Managing Director, Marko Silventoinen has taken the company in a new data-driven, highly efficient direction. Their ‘book life cycle management’ business model promises to optimise the supply and value chains of printed books and subsequently make their business practices more sustainable. Marko highlighted the benefits the business is already seeing, “By adapting short-run production to the value chain, we are already reducing inventory on the new titles by 15%.”
Canon Idea Challenge 2021
As our own new initiative for this year’s Future Book Forum, we also set up the Canon Idea Challenge which welcomed innovative ideas to make printed books more sustainable. Using the HYVE Crowd platform, the competition was open to everyone inside and outside the book industry, and the shortlist of entrants pitched their ideas live during the Future Book Forum to a panel of experts in the ‘Canon Innovators Cauldron’! Attendees had a chance to vote for their favourite idea and we had some excellent submissions. The proud winners of the Canon Idea Challenge 2021 are:
1. Lucy Swanston, Topic Heroes
2. Michael Schobersteiner, QR - Quality Label on the Book
3. Robert Gegenhuber, Print-on-Demand books meets Crowdfunding
Overall, we saw attendees enthusiastically embracing the new ideas and practices shared throughout the forum and we predict a positive and more sustainable future for the industry, We’re looking forward to celebrating a decade of Future Book Forums next year!
Missed this year’s event? You can watch below for highlights of Future Book Forum 2021