Call for Nominations: Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) International Excellence Award 2017

November 7, 2016

The ABC is now inviting nominations for the 2017 Accessible Books Consortium International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing. This award recognizes outstanding leadership and achievements in advancing the accessibility of commercial e-books or other digital publications for persons who are print disabled.

Two awards will be presented, one to a publisher and one for an initiative. In making its final decision, the selection panel (comprised of various organizations working in the field of accessibility) will consider the extent to which the following elements are present in each nominee’s work:

  • an organization-wide commitment to making content available in accessible formats;
  • accessibility standards built into production systems to make books accessible on, or close to, publication date;
  • collaboration with partners in the supply chain to ensure that accessibility is maintained in delivering the product to the print disabled end-user;
  • innovative practices established to advance the accessibility of e-books and digital publications for persons who are print disabled.

Nominations

You may nominate either your own organization/company or a third party anywhere in the world, and ABC encourages nominations of companies, organizations or individuals based in developing or least developed countries. The two awardees will be presented with trophies at the annual awards event held at the London Book Fair on Tuesday, March 14, 2017.

Please submit your application by Thursday, December 15, 2016 through the London Book Fair website.

You can read about the winners of the 2016 ABC International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing.

About the Accessible Books Consortium

The Accessible Books Consortium is a multi-stakeholder alliance, comprising the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO); organizations that represent people with print disabilities, including the World Blind Union; libraries for people with print disabilities; and organizations representing publishers and authors, including the International Publishers Association and the International Authors Forum. The ABC aims to increase the number of books worldwide in accessible formats – such as braille, audio and large print – and to make them available to people who are blind, have low vision or are otherwise print disabled.

ABC carries out activities in three areas to fulfill its mandate, namely:

  • Capacity building, i.e., training and technical assistance in developing countries in the production and distribution of books in accessible formats;
  • Inclusive publishing, i.e., promotion of accessible book production techniques so that published books are usable from the outset by both sighted people and those with print disabilities; and
  • The ABC Book Service (i.e.,TIGAR), which is a database of accessible titles located at WIPO’s headquarters in Geneva that can be exchanged across national borders.

Some 285 million people worldwide are visually impaired according to the World Health Organization's 2014 estimates. More than 90% of these are resident in developing countries, where the World Blind Union (WBU) estimates that people who are blind have only a one in ten chance of going to school or getting a job. The lack of accessible books is a very real barrier to getting an education and leading an independent, productive life.

For further information, please visit our website or e-mail us at: accessible.books@wipo.int.