Our Work

IPA’s work focuses on two main pillars, the protection and promotion of copyright and the freedom to publish, as well as a range of other issues. This work is conducted by committees as described below.

Freedom to Publish

One of IPA’s two policy pillars is the promotion of the freedom to publish. Freedom to publish is a fundamental subset of freedom of expression, and is a prerequisite for a thriving publishing industry, which is itself an essential part of a democratic society. Freedom of expression is embodied in many international treaties and declarations.


The IPA General Assembly elects the 9 members of the Freedom to Publish Committee to conduct the IPA’s work in this area in line with the IPA’s Freedom to Publish Manifesto.

IPA Freedom to Publish Committee Members

BAKR, Sherif (Egypt). Former Secretary General of the Egyptian Publishing Association.

BAKR, Sherif

Former Secretary General of the Egyptian Publishing Association.

BANCHIK, Roberto (Mexico). Director General of Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial, Mexico.

BANCHIK, Roberto

ATIKER, Zey (Turkey). (R&D and International Relations, Turkish Publishers Association.


R&D and International Relations, Turkish Publishers Association.

CROZIER, Sarah (USA). Senior Director of Communications, Association of American Publishers.


Senior Director of Communications, Association of American Publishers.

DE JOCAS, Simon (Canada). Owner and President, Éditions Les 400 coups.


Owner and President, Éditions Les 400 coups

Kristenn Einarsson, Chair of the Freedom to Publish Committee


Managing Director, World Expression Forum.

Chair of the Freedom to Publish Committee
YOSHINO, Yoshiaki (Japan). Chief Officer, Japan Book Publishers Association.

YOSHINO, Yoshiaki

KANG, Jaeho (Republic of Korea). Seoul National University.

KANG, Jaeho

Seoul National University.

(Republic of Korea)
SÄNGER, Jessica (Germany). Legal Counsel and Director of European & International Affairs, Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels

SÄNGER, Jessica

Legal Counsel and Director of European & International Affairs, Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels

Chair of the IPA Copyright Committee

IPA Prix Voltaire

The IPA Prix Voltaire is an annual prize of CHF 10,000 for publishers who put themselves at risk to promote and defend the freedom to publish. It is named after the French philosopher and writer François-Marie Arouet (penname Voltaire), who lived for many years in Geneva and its environs while promoting tolerance and free expression before the terms were in general use.

Nominations for the 2024 IPA Prix Voltaire opened on 11 January 2024 and will close on 22 March 2024. Read the call for nominations here.

The IPA Prix Voltaire is possible thanks to generous contributions from the following sponsors:


To find out how you or your organization can support the IPA Prix Voltaire (brochure) please contact prix-voltaire@internationalpublishers.org


Prix Voltaire Special Award

Periodically, the IPA Freedom to Publish Committee may confer the Prix Voltaire Special Award, a posthumous honour for individuals who have died recently for exercising their freedom of expression. The aim of the award is to give visibility to the laureate’s exceptional engagement for freedom of expression and expose how they were silenced.

Any IPA member may alert the FtPC to cases which they feel are worthy of a Special Award. FtPC members may nominate candidates for the Special Award. See criteria here.

Prix Voltaire Prizes

Mazin Lateef Ali, Iraq
Same Sky Books (Thailand)
Dar Al Jadeed Publishing House (Lebanon)
Liberal Publishing House (Vietnam).
Imprisoned Egyptian publisher Khaled Lotfy
Gui Minhai (Sweden/Hong Kong)
Jointly awarded to Turkish publishers Turhan Günay and Evrensel
Raif Badawi (Saudi Arabia)
Ihar Lohvinau (Belarus)
“Zapiro” (South Africa)
I. Shovkhalov & V. Kogan-Yasni of DOSH (Chechnya-Russia)
S Bensedrine, N. Rijba, M. Talbi, Founders of OLPEC (Tunisia)
Ragip Zarakolu (Turkey)
Trevor Ncube (Zimbabwe)
Anna Politkovskaya and Hrant Dink

Inclusive Publishing and Literacy

The Inclusive Publishing and Literacy Committee is chaired by Michiel Kolman (Elsevier, Netherlands) and is made up of 5 sub-committees dealing with accessibility, literacy, diversity and inclusion, sustainability and IPA’s work on the UNESCO World Book Capital Cities Programme.

KOLMAN, Michiel (The Netherlands). Michiel Kolman, Senior Vice President, Elsevier.

KOLMAN, Michiel

Senior Vice President, Elsevier.

(The Netherlands)
Chair of the Inclusive Publishing and Literacy Committee


Publishers value all readers, irrespective of how they access their works, and share the aspiration of those with visual and other impairments for full, simultaneous access to works on equal terms.

The IPA’s Accessibility sub-committee supports IPA members in exchanging best practices and sharing information on how to improve availability of books to visually impaired persons. It cooperates with organisations representing visually impaired persons, as well as rightsholders, collective licensing organisations, libraries and other institutions.


Accessible Books Consortium (ABC)

IPA is a founding member of the Accessible Books Consortium (ABC), a multi-stakeholder partnership convened by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to accompany the implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty and increase the number of books worldwide in accessible formats, such as braille, audio and large print.


The ABC Publishers Charter

The IPA calls on all publishers to sign the Charter for Accessible Publishing to promote born-accessible production and ensure that everyone in our society has equal access.


How to start accessible publishing

·      A starter kit for accessible publishing in developing and least developed countries (PDF);

·      Accessible Publishing Best Practice Guidelines for Publishers;

·      IPA Guide to the Marrakesh Treaty (also in Spanish).

Other tools and online training are available from the ABC website.

Literacy & Reading

The ability to read and to write is fundamental to education and to full and meaningful social, political and cultural engagement. IPA supports literacy and reading initiatives which collaborate with publishers to promote literacy and reading in such a way that a sustainable local publishing industry can develop. Local publishers give local writers a voice and local readers, whatever their age, the reading material that reflects on their reality, their cultural context and their own way of life.

The mission of CPNB, Collectieve Propaganda van het Nederlandse Boek (Collective Promotion for the Dutch
LitCam is a non-profit organization that operates as an independent non-profit organization since 2010.
Association Read is a non-profit membership organization established in 1997. Today, the association has 40
We're committed to helping families share quality time through reading. We make it happen through
The Finnish Reading Center is a well established NGO, which promotes reading, literacy and literature.
World Book Day changes lives through a love of books and shared reading.
Knigovishte.bg is an educational online platform that strengthens children's ability to make sense of the

Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion is an increasingly important consideration in the book sector both in terms of the subject matter of books published andrecruitment within publishers. The Diversity and Inclusion Working Group seeks to exchange and promote best practices from individual publishers and publishers’ associations in the field of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).


Publishers have the opportunity to contribute to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals both through the books they publish and the way they conduct themselves as businesses. IPA’s Sustainability Working Group leads the IPA’s work on the Sustainable Development Goals. The Committee meets to exchange experiences from different countries and regions and drive the international publishing sustainability dialogue.

The IPA’s SDG Dashboard shares examples of the great work publishers around the world are doing to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals as well as providing information on the SDG Book Club and the SDG Publishers Compact.

SDG Publishers Compact logotype

World Book Capital Cities

Six years after the launching of the World Book and Copyright Day (23 April) in 1995, IPA had the idea, inspired by the successful experience of the city of Madrid, to nominate the best city programme aimed at promoting books during the period between one Book Day and the next.

UNESCO supported the initiative and every year convenes delegates from the International Publishers Association, the International Authors Forum (IAF), the European and International Booksellers Federation (EIBF) and the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) to consider the applications. This Advisory Committee makes a shortlist of three candidates and recommends a winner to UNESCO’s Director-General.

World Book Capital Cities

Educational Publishing

One of publishing’s most important market sectors is education. The IPA supports this vital sector through our Educational Publishers Forum (EPF), chaired by Stephan de Valk (MEVW, Netherlands), which brings together professional educational publishers from around the world. The mission of educational publishers is to provide the learning resources that teachers need to best implement curricula, in ways that will lead to better learning outcomes. The EPF believes in three core principles to achieve this goal:

  1. Choice
  2. Local solutions
  3. Collaboration


To do this, publishers need:

  • The marketplace to be open, competitive, and feature a range of publishers’ products and services;
  • Copyright to be respected and strengthened to ensure the continual development of specialized, high-quality content;
  • Sustainable business environments and respect for the freedom to publish.



How to join

Download the pdf to learn more about how to become a member of the EPF.

Click cover to download brochure.

Read our case studies about educational publishing around the world:

IPA Educational Publishers Forum – Building Smarter Generations – Videos

Data and Statistics

The IPA is committed to providing publishers’ associations around the world with analysis which they can use to promote the sector. The IPA’s Data and Statistics Committee, chaired by Pranav Gupta (Prints Publications, India), co-operates with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and others to improve the availability of economic data on the sector as well as data on other aspects of publishing such as VAT-rates, use of the fixed book price system, diversity within the sector etc.

IPA Congresses and Events

The IPA organizes the International Publishers Congress every two years in cooperation with the IPA member in the host country. The Congress offers an unrivalled platform for networking and discussion among the world’s publishers on industry challenges and opportunities. See our dedicated Congress site here.

IPA has also conducted regional seminars in the past attended by hundreds of publishers, policymakers, entrepreneurs and creative industry stakeholders with the common goal of showcasing publishing as an innovative, influential and universally beneficial force in a given region.


34th IPA Congress logotype

IPA Reports

The International Publishers Association regularly produces reports on different aspects of the publishing industry.

Annual Report 2022-2023

Annual Report 2021-2022

Annual Report 2020-2021

Annual Report 2019-2020

Annual Report 2018-2019

Annual Report 2017-2018

Annual Report 2017-2018

Annual Report 2016-2017

Annual Report 2016-2017

Annual Report 2015-2016

Annual Report 2014-2015

Annual Report 2013-2014

Annual Report 2012-2013

State of Publishing Reports

International Publishing Data 2023 covers the 76 countries where IPA had members at the beginning of 2023.
This report was commissioned in February 2021 by the International Publishers Association (IPA) and the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organisations (IFRRO).
Ambitious Literary Policies: International Perspectives

Download the report

This book is a call to arms for active literary politics and serves as an introduction to cultural policy measures that currently shape literature and publishing industries in different states and regions around the world.
This report takes stock of reports from around the world to focus individual cases but also build a picture of the main violations against the freedom to publish, the main challenges publishers face and which countries are of particular concern.
This report looks at all 17 Sustainable Development Goals and what publishers around the world are doing in terms of what they publish and how they operate as businesses.
This report presents a comprehensive overview of how licensing actually works in different publishing sectors and regions.
This report presents a comprehensive overview of how licensing actually works in different publishing sectors and regions.
This report is the ultimate reference document for copyright laws that impact publishers.
Reading Matters was the original slogan for the International Publishers Congress. This report gathers together the results of multiple surveys from around the world that look at reading habits as well as initiatives to encourage people to read more.
For a number of years, the International Publishers Association (IPA) and the Federation of European Publishers (FEP) have questioned our members and conducted desk research into as many countries as possible about the rate of Value Added Tax (VAT) applied to printed books and e-books.

Event reports

The Africa Action Plan Committee comprises a cross-section of seasoned African publishers tasked with taking
Held under the patronage of Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, this was the first
Book industry leaders and policy makers gathered for the second IPA African Seminar, in Nairobi,
Two hundred participants gathered in Lagos, Nigeria, to attend the first IPA Regional Seminar on


The International Sustainable Publishing and Industry Resilience (InSPIRe) Plan, undertaken by Bodour Al Qasimi (IPA President 2021-22), improved cooperation across the publishing spectrum.

The 2020 IPA report From Response to Recovery revealed appetite for greater cooperation across the book space. Organisations interested in such cooperation signed the InSPIRe Charter and following surveys, workshops and a symposium contributed to the report A Collective Commitment to a Sustainable, Resilient and Inclusive Future.

Inspire podcasts playlist

A collective commitment to a sustainable, resilient, and inclusive future

InSPIRE report cover
InSPIRE report, click to download

How Global Publishing can Channel Solidarity into Opportunity

Como o mercado editorial global pode incorporar solidariedade em oportunidade
click to download

Africa Publishing Innovation Fund

In May 2019 the IPA and UAE-based philanthropic organization Dubai Cares agreed to work together to support literacy, book access, indigenous publishing, and library restoration in Africa. The IPA created the Africa Publishing Innovation Fund to administer the USD 800,000 grant over three years.

Africa Publishing Innovation Fund Logo