Frankfurt, 10 February 2023 – Juergen Boos, Director and CEO of Frankfurter Buchmesse, has been appointed Knight 1st Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit by His Majesty King Harald V of Norway for his commitment to Norwegian literature and culture and the German-Norwegian relations. Kristin Kathrine Johansen, Envoy and Deputy Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway to Germany, will hand over the decoration to Juergen Boos on 11 February 2023 in Frankfurt.
The Order of Merit – in Norwegian: Den Kongelege Norske Fortenstordenen – was founded in 1985 by King Olaf V of Norway and is awarded for special services to Norwegian interests.
In the letter of recommendation from the Order's Chancellery it states: "Juergen Boos deserves the royal award for his commitment to promoting the Norwegian-German relations and Norwegian literature in Germany. His efforts spanned over a long period of time, they were dedicated and selfless, and for the benefit of both the interests of Norway and its people."
Juergen Boos has been Director and CEO of Frankfurter Buchmesse GmbH since 2005. He trained as a bookseller at Herder Verlag in the 1980s and studied marketing and organisational theory. He was a manager at Droemer Knaur, Carl Hanser Verlag and Springer Science and Business Media (today: Springer Nature) as well as at John Wiley and Sons. He is President of LITPROM (Society for the Promotion of African, Asian and Latin American Literature) and Managing Director of LitCam (Frankfurter Buchmesse Literacy Campaign).
Juergen Boos was awarded the Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art in 2013, and in 2017 he received an honorary degree from the Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University. In 2018, he was conferred the cultural distinction of “Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres“ (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) at the French embassy in Berlin. On 5 October 2022, he received the Vigdís International Prize. He is also a member of the Scientific Committee of the Sheikh Zayed Book Award and a member of Akademie Deutscher Buchpreis (German Book Prize Academy).
About Norway's Guest of Honour presentation at Frankfurter Buchmesse 2019:
Guest regions have been presenting themselves at the book fair since 1976; since 1988, there has been an annual Guest of Honour presentation, which is largely organised and financed by the Guests of Honour themselves.
Norway presented itself as Guest of Honour at Frankfurter Buchmesse 2019 under the motto "Norway – The Dream We Carry". The Guest of Honour project was organised by NORLA (Norwegian Literature Abroad) on behalf of the Norwegian government. At the official Opening Ceremony of the 2019 book fair, the Prime Minister of Norway at that time, Erna Solberg, was among the speakers and HRH Crown Princess Mette-Marit, as patron and ambassador of Norwegian literature, recited the poem "The Dream We Carry" by the Norwegian poet Olav H. Hauge, which gave its name to the motto of the Guest of Honour appearance.
In 2019, 510 new titles on Norway were published in German alone by 217 publishing houses, including 296 translations from Norwegian. 100 Norwegian authors came to the book fair 2019 to present their literature. In total, 198 Norwegian authors took part in the literary programme in Germany, Austria and Switzerland during the Guest of Honour year.
For the translation of Norwegian titles, NORLA provided a broad support programme for international publishers, with translation funding, travel grants and advice. Between 2017 and 2019, approximately € 607 750 were used to support the translation of a total of 198 Norwegian titles into German.
In the 2,300 sqm Guest of Honour Pavilion, an imaginary landscape of 23 abstract sculptures was created under the motto "Norway – The Dream We Carry", inviting visitors to take a thematic journey through Norwegian literature. A top-class programme on two stages attracted around 100,000 visitors to the pavilion.
More than 650 titles from 220 publishing houses and 30 countries were on display at the international book exhibition "Books on Norway", organised by Frankfurter Buchmesse and on display in the Guest of Honour Pavilion. In Hall 5, 24 Norwegian publishing companies presented themselves on the 240 sqm joint stand. 21 other exhibitors from Norway were to be found in other halls and on the Agora with a total of 214 sqm. The Guest of Honour also had other presences and events at the fair, including audio, education, THE ARTS+, Gourmet Gallery, children's books, as well as the LitCam Stage and the Frankfurt Pavilion.
In 2019, a total of 1120 literary and cultural events related to the Guest of Honour Norway took place: During the book fair week, the literary programme included 120 events in the Guest of Honour Pavilion, another 30 on the fairgrounds and over 40 events in the city of Frankfurt. A further 700 literary events took place at 108 venues in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, organised in cooperation with 358 partners. There were more than 230 cultural events during the entire year, 60 of them in Frankfurt alone during the book fair week.