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Abu Dhabi Publishing Forum starts tomorrow
By a Staff Reporter January 29, 2018
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ABU DHABI: The Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi announced the completion of its preparations for the Abu Dhabi Publishing Forum, to be held on Jan.30 and 31, under the theme ‘Transformations and Achievements in the Publishing Industry: The Emirati Experience’.

The forum, taking place at Manarat Al Saadiyat, will host expert Arab and foreign publishers and writers representing institutions and centres from around the world.

Sheikha Bodour Bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Founder and President of the Emirates Publishers Association, is participating in the Forum’s opening session with a paper titled ‘Road Map of the Future of Publishing in the UAE’, along with Dr Hany Torky, Chief Technical Adviser of the Arab Knowledge Project, United Nations Development Programme, who will present a study on ‘Reading Indicators in Arab Countries’. Participants in the sessions also include Dr Ali Bin Tamim, Director General of Abu Dhabi Media Company, Habib Al Sayegh, Secretary General of the Arab Writers Union and Chairman of the Emirates Writers Union, Ali Obaid Al Hamli, Director of News at Dubai Media Corporation, and Saudi writer Dr Sulaiman Al Hattlan.

Also participating in the forum are Isobel Abulhoul, CEO of the Emirates Foundation for Literature and Director of the Emirates Airline Festival, Naoya Herata, General Manager of the Kinokuniya Book Stores in Dubai; Margaret Obank, Publisher and Director of Banpial Magazine in London; Dalia Ibrahim, Chairwoman of Nahdet Misr Publishing Group; Rania El Muallem, Deputy Director of Dar Al Saqi in Beirut, and Noura Al Noman, a writer and publisher.

The forum will address the challenges facing the publishing sector not only in the region but also internationally, especially as the discussions will focus on the transformations in the regional publishing sector and the opportunities and issues of electronic and print publishing. The first day will consist of three sessions, first of which is ‘Authorship and Publishing: The Emirati Experience’, which will discuss the experiences of writers in promoting the publishing industry through the establishment of publishing houses that not only publish their products but also other various works, in addition to exploring the publishing movement and its development. Speakers in this session will include Ayesha Sultan, founding director of the Dubai-based Dar Waraq Publishing, Khaled Al Essa, founder of Hamaleel Publishing & Distribution, writer and novelist Abdullah Al Nuaimi, and writer and novelist Reem Al Kamali.

The second session, ‘Leading Publishing Projects in the UAE’, will provide an overview of the most prominent projects in the UAE, approaches for their development, and the role they play in raising public awareness. It will host Jamal Bin Huwaireb, Managing Director of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Knowledge Foundation, and Noura Binhadiya, General Manager of Knowledge without Borders.

In support of publishing efforts, writer Ibrahim Al Hashemi, Ali Saif Al Nuaimi, Director General of United Printing & Publishing at Abu Dhabi Media Company, and Mohammed Bin Dakhin Al Matroushi, treasurer and member of the Emirates Publishers Association, will discuss publishing skills, the impact of different variables on the market, and the challenges of printing, marketing and distribution in the second session titled ‘Supporting and Developing the Publishing Industry in the UAE’.

The first day will also feature a workshop under the title ‘The Development of Publishing and its Reflection on the Emirati Society’, to be conducted by Emirati novelist Ali Abu Al-Reesh. The workshop will look into enquiries on writing and the Emirati status quo, the role of writers in activating social mobility, and books as means of communication with the other. The following day will present ‘The Creative Process… and the Promising Writer’ workshop with Emirati writer and academic Dr Fatima Al Mazrouei. The workshops, held in conjunction with the sessions, are designed to explore the elements that shape and drive the publishing sector, starting with the creative process itself and  its effects, and delving into the processes of editing, rewriting techniques and selecting the right publisher.

Promoting culture

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction that enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike. 

The Department manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment. 

Its policies, plans and programmes relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the Zayed National Museum and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.

The Department of Culture and Tourism supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honour the emirate’s heritage. A key role played by the Department is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wide-ranging stakeholder base.

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