In a bid to strengthening its presence in the international cultural landscape, Knowledge without Borders is participating in the 34th Paris Book Fair, which will be concluded on the 24th of March, as well as the 51st Bologna Children’s Book Fair which will take place in Italy from 24th to 27th of March.
Through these participations, KWB aims to present Sharjah’s reading promotion efforts which include distributing free home libraries to 42000 families in the Emirate.
Rashid Al Kous, General Manager of Knowledge without Borders, said, “Despite the fact that the project is local and focusing on the emirate of Sharjah, it still aims to participate in various international cultural events dedicated to book, reading and publishing to present this pioneering and unprecedented experience of distributing more than one million book for free to 42000 Emirati families – a groundbreaking initiative that is like no other in the region or even the entire world. Through this exposure we aim also to exchange experience with organisations dedicated to cultural development and reading promotion.”
He said that KWB is gaining increasing international attention and recognition and its selection criteria, which include excellent content, attractive designs and good printing have been recognised by renowned international publishers. These criteria will contribute to developing the Emirati and Arab publishing industry, as Arab publishers will pay more attention to the quality of their publications in order to be selected by the project. This will increase the chance of translating these publications to other languages as they meet the quality standards adopted in Europe and the USA.
The Paris Book Fair is one of the premier events in Europe for book industry professionals and this year’s edition attracted 1200 publishers and 2000 authors from 37 countries.
The Bologna Children’s Book Fair is considered as the world’s most important international event dedicated to the children’s books. The fair brings together thousands of publishers, authors, illustrators, literary agents, licensors and licensees, printers, booksellers, librarians, and distributors from about 60 countries worldwide.
The Knowledge without Borders initiative was launched in 2008 under the generous patronage of HH Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, and with the close follow up of Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Head of the Organising Committee of the Knowledge without Borders project. The initiative aims to promote the culture of reading in each Emirati house by establishing home libraries – filled with a valuable collection of Arabic books – covering various areas of knowledge that cater to the intellectual needs of all members of the family.
Yousef Al Taweel
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