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This year’s Frankfurt Book Fair is a truly European one

Frankfurt, 12.10.2016 – “Frankfurt is just a three-and-a-half hour train ride from Brussels,” said Juergen Boos, Director of the Frankfurt Book Fair a few days before the opening of the Fair. “But for many people, Brussels is a ‘black box’, an unknown territory. We want to change that and bring it closer to us all, because we think Brussels and the European Union are important – not only for book publishing, but for us as citizens and for our societies. I am happy to say, our efforts are bringing results. This year’s Frankfurt Book Fair is a truly European one. Despite the crises and despite Brexit, the European book sector has a full presence in Frankfurt – a sign of the strong network that European publishers and booksellers have established.”

The keynote speech at this year’s opening ceremony of the Fair on Tuesday evening will be held by Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament and a bookseller by profession. As this year’s Guest of Honour, Flanders and the Netherlands, are at the very heart of Europe – and as they also share some of the tensions that affect Europe – we can expect a stirring speech from Schulz.

Two EU Commissioners will also be visiting Frankfurt. Firstly, Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, will speak at the STM Frankfurt Conference 2016, which is devoted to “Scholarly publishing 2020: Innovation beyond the curve” (Tuesday, 18 October). As a fierce advocate of open access, his talk on “Open Science – What is next” is sure to spark a lively debate. Secondly, Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society, will speak at an event devoted to “CONTENTshift”, a new European accelerator for start-ups and a project of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association. (Thursday, 20 October, 10.00 am, Frankfurt Book Fair, Hall 3.C Ost, Room Argument).

The Federation of European Publishers (FEP) and the European and International Booksellers Federation (EIBF) are organising several events at the Book Fair. The European digital library, Europeana, and the EU Commission’s Directorate General for Culture and Education will both enjoy a strong presence as partners in the newly launched fair for the creative industries, THE ARTS+. Here are just a few of the planned activities:

How do we build a European innovation network for the creative sectors? This is the question that will be addressed at a high-level workshop called “THE ARTS+: The Politics of Creativity”, organised in cooperation with the European Commission’s Directorate General for Education and Culture (Wednesday, 19 October, 1.30 – 3.00 pm, THE ARTS+ Salon, Hall 4.1, Q109). The creative sectors are drivers of jobs and growth, and they show a remarkable resilience even in times of crisis. At the same time, they face a high pressure to innovate and they need to access finance and knowledge, such as that provided through programmes like the EU’s Horizon2020 and Creative Europe, or through regional and national innovation support infrastructure and initiatives.

Europeana, which provides online access to millions of digitised items from European museums, libraries, archives and multi-media collections, is also a partner for THE ARTS+, in the “Europeana Lab”. In this multidisciplinary workshop, a team of 25 experts and design students will tap the full potential of cultural archives and develop new business models for cultural content in the digital age (public pitching event: Friday, 21 October, 1.00 – 4.00 pm, THE ARTS+, Hall 4.1 P84).

Another European newcomer to the Fair is ALDUS, the network of European book fairs. Holger Volland, Vice President of the Frankfurt Book Fair, explains: “The Frankfurt Book Fair has long-established ties with over 20 book fairs all around the world. But we realised what we really need is a much stronger network of fairs within Europe, which can invest in the greater professionalism of its programmes and projects, and help its members learn from each other.” ALDUS provides that network. Through collective events, and dedicated networking and training activities, it fosters the cross-border mobility of European literary works and book professionals. It is a partnership featuring two leading international trade book fairs (Frankfurt and Bologna) as well as a variety of national book fairs (Rome, Vilnius, Riga, Lisbon and Bucharest). As the project progresses, it will develop into a fully pan-European network. Aldus is co-funded by the European Union under the Creative Europe programme, it will run from June 2016 to September 2019. More information:

Last but not least, this year, the Frankfurt Book Fair’s Weltempfang – Centre for Politics, Literature and Translation (Hall 3.1, stand L25) is dedicated entirely to Europe. With a programme of more than 40 events, it features speakers such as Boualem Sansal, Elif Shafak, Ian Kershaw, Herfried Münkler, Timothy Garton Ash and Priya Basil. The audience can take part in a range of heartfelt conversations revolving around the one central question: How do we want to continue living together in Europe?

Events with a focus on Europe:
All events held as part of ALDUS, the European Book Fairs’ Network (marked here with an asterisk *) are co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union.

Tuesday 18 October

what: European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL), sponsors’ coffee at the LitAg
where: Publishers’ Rights Corner and Literary Agents & Scouts Centre (LitAg)
when: Tuesday 18 October, 9.00 – 11.00 am
Organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL) and Frankfurt Book Fair

what: Frankfurt Rights Meeting: Promoting literature with the help of prizes: accelerators for success? The European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL) as a best practice case
with: Pierre Astier, Astier-Pércher Literary & Film Agency, France; Anne Bergman-Tahon, director Federation of European Publishers (FEP) Belgium
when: Tuesday, 18 October, 3.00 – 3.20 pm
where: Hall 4.2, Room Dimension, Frankfurt Rights Meeting
Organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL) and Frankfurt Book Fair

Wednesday 19 October

what: Reception: Lithuania as Guest of Honour at the Leipzig Book Fair 2017
with: Oliver Zille, Director of the Leipzig Book Fair; Laimonas Ubavičius, Chancellor of the Ministry of Culture of Lithuania; Alvydas Šlepikas, writer; Aušrinė Žilinskienė, Director of the Lithuanian Culture Institute; Aida V. Dobkevičiūtė, Executive Director of the Lithuanian Publishers Association
where: Hall 5.0, stand A31
when: Wednesday, 19 October, 2.00 pm
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Lithuanian Publishers Association

what: THE ARTS+: The Politics of Creativity
with: Aliette Dörflinger, Austrian Institute for SME Research; Jens Nymand Christensen, European Commission, Deputy Director General for Education and Culture; Anni Hellman, European Commission, Deputy Head of Unit, Media Convergence and Social Media with the Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content & Technology; Rolf Krämer, Head of Division Creative Industries at the Hessian Ministry of Economics; Dorothee Werner, Head of Business Development, German Publishers and Booksellers Association; Bernd Fesel, Managing Director, European Creative Business Network (ECBN); Marta Izquierdo, Director of European Affairs at Smart Digital Entertainment
where: THE ARTS+ Salon, Hall 4.1, stand Q 109
when: Wednesday, 19 October, 1.30 – 3.00 pm
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair

what: Ask the Expert: Creative Europe Programme – Funding opportunities for the cultural and creative industries
with: Ingveig Astad, European Commission, DG Education & Culture; Arnaud Pasquali, European Commission, DG EACEA
where: Business Club, Hall 4.0, meeting area
when: Wednesday, 19 October, 4.00 – 5.30 pm
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair

Thursday 20 October

what: Business Breakfast: Reading à la carte in France – a literary land presents itself. How international publishers can prepare themselves for France as the Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2017.
with: Simone Bühler, Head of Guest of Honour Programme, Frankfurt Book Fair; Paul de Sinety (General Commissioner of the French Guest of Honour appearance); Fabrice Gabriel (Director, Institut francais)
where: Business Club, Hall 4.0, meeting area
when: Thursday, 20 October, 8.30 – 9.30 am
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair

what: Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. An information session about a call for proposals to be published in spring 2017, through which publishers can access grants of up to 400,000 euros over a four-year period, to co-finance the translation, publication and promotion of European works.
with: Arnaud Pasquali and Piero Fratini (European Commission, EACEA, Culture unit); Katharina Weinert (Creative Europe Desk Culture, Germany)
when: Thursday, 20 October, 9.30 – 10.15 am (in German), 11.00 – 11.45 am (in English)
where: Hall 4.C, Room Entente
organiser: European Commission, Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)

what: Closing event of the first book and content industry accelerator programme, CONTENTshift, with pitches by the six start-up finalists
with: Günther Oettinger, EU Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society
when: Thursday, 20 October, 10.00 am
where: Hall 3.C Ost, Room Effekt
organiser: German Publishers and Booksellers Association
further information:

what: Reception with international publishers and agents: The European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL) invites you to the Slovenian Stand to celebrate with the Slovenian winner of the EUPL 2016, Jasmin B. Frelih.
with: Jasmin B. Frelih (Slovenia), “Na/pol” (“In/Half”), winner of the EUPL 2016, Slovenia; Milan Dekleva: “Telo iz črk” (“A Body of Letters”), Slovenia
where: Hall 6.1, D36
when: Thursday, 20 October, 4.00 - 6.00 pm
organiser: Mladinska Knjiga Založba, d.d., Slovenska 29, 1000 Ljubljana, SLOVENIA, with the support of EUPL and ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*

Friday, 21 October

what: European Union Prize for Literature: Chances and Opportunities. Frankfurt Fellowship Programme participants from three different EU countries discuss the results of the prize and the expectations surrounding it. In cooperation with the European Network for Literary Translation (ENLIT).
with: Sinéad Mac Aodha (Ireland; director Literature Ireland; moderator); Joanna Maciuk (Poland; Prószýnski Media Sp. z o.o.); Adrian Searle (UK; Freight Books); Christiaan van Raaijen (France; Éditions Bernard Grasset)
where: Hall 3.1., Weltempfang Salon, stand L 25
when: Friday, 21 October, 4.00 – 5.00 pm
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair; European Network for Literary Translation ENLIT

Saturday, 22 October

what: Working Meeting of European Translation Grant Organisations
where: Business Club, Hall 4.0, Business Stage
when: Saturday, 22 October, 11.00 am – 1.00 pm
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair

what: Reading Europe – New Approaches to the Promotion and Networking of European Book Markets. The network of European book fairs, ALDUS, is a project co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. Its aim is to increase the professionalism with which literature is promoted across Europe. This workshop will present three successful models, drawing on the example of the Frankfurt Book Fair. The workshop will kick off a four-year strategy process intended to develop the promotion of literature across Europe by establishing a sustainable and professional network of European book fairs.
with: Bärbel Becker (Frankfurt Book Fair, director of international projects); Nina Klein (Frankfurter Book Fair, associate partner, director business development/Europe); Jenny Kühne (Frankfurt Book Fair, rights & licensing manager); Niki Théron (Frankfurt Book Fair, manager international projects)
where: Business Club, Hall 4.0, Stage
when: Saturday 22 October, Business Club Stage (Hall 4.0 F/B1)
organiser: ALDUS – European Book Fairs’ Network*; Frankfurt Book Fair

About the Frankfurt Book Fair
The Frankfurt Book Fair is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair – with 7,100 exhibitors from more than 100 countries, around 275,000 visitors, over 4,000 events and approximately 10,000 accredited journalists – including 2,000 bloggers - in attendance. It also gathers key players from other media, including the film and games industries. Since 1976, the Book Fair has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, which showcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways. The Frankfurt Book Fair organises the participation of German publishers at around 20 international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. With its Business Club, the Frankfurt Book Fair offers essential services and an ideal setting for the activities of publishers, entrepreneurs, pioneers, experts and visionaries. The Frankfurt Book Fair is a subsidiary of the German Publishers & Booksellers Association.

Contact for the media:
Press & Corporate Communications, Frankfurt Book Fair
Katja Böhne, Vice President Marketing & Communications, tel.: +49 (0) 69 2102-138,
Kathrin Grün, PR manager, Tel.: +49 (0) 69 2102-170,
> Press information online >
> Photos in print quality >