Ficci PubliCon 2020 discusses the economics of publishing

Govind Prasad Sharma, chairman, National Book Trust, India, on 9 January said that books are not just reflection of the society, but also the guiding force to give direction that will pave the way forward to a new society.

15 Jan 2020 | By Dibyajyoti Sarma

Govind Prasad Sharma, chairman, National Book Trust, India

He was speaking at PubliCon 2020 - Economics of Publishing, organised by Ficci. The event also saw the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (Ficci) announce its annual awards for children’s and business books.

Sharma said books are often termed as soft power and highlight the current challenges of the society in order to create future society. “Whenever we try to create a new society through the help of books, not only the society gets reflected but also efforts are made to guide the society as well."

He added that publishers should also keep society in mind while publishing books.

Highlighting the challenges of the publishing industry, Sharma said that one of the important issues is with regard to the pricing of book and profits. “While deciding on the price points of the books, we should consider the target market for which we are publishing," Sharma added.

“Publishers can either opt for publishing less copies of a book at higher price or more copies at lesser price in order to make profits. In India, we should focus on printing a greater number of copies of a book at lesser cost and still make profits," Sharma said.

Maj Gen G D Bakshi (retd), author and TV commentator, said, “Even today, the printed page makes a huge difference, changes the narratives and changes the discourse." He added that books have the power to generate images and create imaginations, a power which the digital world lacks.

Birad Rajaram Yajnik, founder director and curator, Mahatma Gandhi Digital Museums, said innovation and seeing the invisible are two key aspects of the publication industry to survive and do better.

Ratnesh Jha, chair, Ficci publishing committee and managing director - South Asia, Cambridge University Press, said publishing is one industry which goes beyond the boundaries of various countries. Ficci will play an important role in building the society and soft power and the nation to nation relationship using the medium of publishing.

Karthika VK, co-chair, FICCI publishing committee and publisher, Westland, said that one of the important things that book can do is to resist and offer plurality of views and multiculturalism.

Ficci Publishing Awards  

Children's Book of the Year – English (Age Category- Below 10)

Rumble in the Jungle by Ranjit Lal (Scholastic India)

Special Jury Award (Age Category- Below 10)

Sera Learns To Fly by Vinitha (Katha)

Special Jury Award (Age Category- 10 & Above)

Best Friends Forever, Arti Sonthalia (Scholastic India)

Children’s Book of the Year -Special Jury Award (Age Category- 10 & Above)

How I Got My Belly Button by Anju Kish (Om Book International)

Children's Book of the Year - Hindi

Mujhe Samajh Nahi Aya! by Mini Shrinivasan/ Shubham Lakhera (Tulika Publishers)

Children's Book of the Year - Special Jury Award

Siyar Aur Mor by Prabhat (Eklavya)


Business Book of the Year

Business Management

The Future-ready Organization: How Dynamic Capability management is Reshaping the Modern Workplace by Gyan Nagpal (HarperCollins Publishers)

Business Economics

The Job Crisis in India by Raghavan Jagganathan (Pan Macmillan India)

Business Self-Help

Where Will Man Take Us? by Atul Jalan (Penguin Random House India)

Biography of Business Leader

Myth of Entrepreneur: A Search for True Value by Ravi Kailas & Cathy Guo (HarperCollins Publishers India)