New trends in publishing


Written by Eliza Kavanagh, Communications Manager for the Publishers Association, on Thursday 27th September 2018.

Earlier this month, we were delighted to attend BIC’s New Trends in Publishing Seminar at Stationer’s Hall in London. In the lead up to Frankfurt, it can be a challenge to take time to reflect so it was a real pleasure to spend the morning thinking about the future of publishing and chatting to members. It was also a great opportunity to hear from publishers and publishing suppliers at the forefront of technological change in our industry.

By far our favourite session of the day was “Immersive Products in the Classroom” from Mark Christian, Global Director of Immersive Learning at Pearson. Christian’s team create immersive learning resources, such as Virtual Reality simulators for health care, that allow students to travel the world without leaving the classroom. The “duck in, duck out” approach allows students to learn in a high-quality learning environment while still collaborating with their peers. Pearson focuses on supplementing the book with new ways to interact with content and concepts, giving learners the best of both their physical and virtual worlds.

From virtual reality to artificial intelligence, Vicky Hampshire, Vice President of Business Development at Yewno, unveiled a new approach to collection categorisation in academic search that uses AI. It’s amazing to think of the possibilities that this could have for academic research and publishing—specifically, the sales and marketing professionals mining the insights for user behaviour.

We were also treated to a glimpse of the world’s best image processing software from the University of Surrey. David Frohlich, Professor of Interaction Design, introduced the “a-book” (or “augmented reality” book)—an augmented travel guide that unites the ebook with the physical book.

But it wasn’t all big picture technology—Simon Parker of Batch provided a great example of where booksellers and publishers have worked together to create efficiencies in the supply chain using technology. The Batch services app provides a scanning function that allows booksellers to scan books in a delivery to find the invoice, which had previously caused problems for matching delivery to the invoice.

And Stephen Long, Global Managing Director of Book Discovery & Commerce Solutions at Nielsen Book, provided us with insight into the audiobook discovery and sales.

It was a thoroughly enjoyable morning and one we look forward to attending every year. To find out more about the programme, including the speaker presentations, visit BIC’s website.