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2017.10.19 Library Fair & Forum: Exploring Libraries and Future of Books
For the three days from November 7 to November 9, 2017, the 19th Library Fair & Forum will take place at the Pacific Convention Plaza (PACIFICO) Yokohama. In terms of its scale it is the largest fair in Japan themed around libraries, and numerous parties related to library and education, as well as publishers, will be among the participants. Given the breakneck progress in today’s society because of IT, the Fair offers a good opportunity to examine the role which the library plays in society, and provides a chance to acquire useful, and the latest, information.

Even today, the importance of reading—especially for children—is increasing, despite the existence of various information mediums that threaten to replace paper-based books. Furthermore, amid the growing trend where individual consumption of books is declining, the publishing industry is showing more interest in the libraries market. At the Fair, there will be booths showcasing various publishing firms, and others introducing university librarian courses, in addition to booths set up for research presentation. KADOKAWA Corporation will present many books geared for libraries, and MEDIA DO Holdings Co., Ltd. will introduce OverDrive Japan, an e-library service.

Over the period of three days, almost 90 forums will be held. The program will be packed with subject matters on the latest trends ranging from e-libraries, active learning, to community development. As popular forums fill up right away, places may not always be available.

Poster session is a popular program too, where university libraries and other non-profits exhibit their creations. Last year, the best poster was selected based on the attendees’ votes. Exhibitors will answer questions in front of their posters and explain the background of their works. The diverse range of themes include the summary of a survey of 1500 students on their library experience; an examination of the new relationship between picture books and children; and proposals for building an appealing library, founded on user perspectives. 

The Fair also has exchanges with overseas libraries. It has partnered with the American Library Association (ALA), which will have its own booth at the venue.

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