From African Publishing Innovation Funds on Mediumposted on 10th March 2021The African Publishing Innovation Fund (APIF) – a grant program co-led by the UAE-based global philanthropic organization Dubai Cares and implemented by the International Publishers Association (IPA) – has chosen five projects across Africa to receive $170,000 in funding in 2021. The APIF Committee, chaired by IPA President Bodour Al Qasimi selected the winners from 311 applications received from 26 African countries.
As African publishers embrace digital content due to schools shifting online, many lack expertise in inclusive publishing practices to meet global accessibility standards. Starting in East Africa’s regional publishing hub of Kenya, with plans to scale to 12 African countries, eKitabu will work with publishers to enrich the remote learning of more than nine million students and teachers with accessible digital learning materials to Improve access to education, books, and literacy skills for 11 million young africans.
The APIF is a four-year, USD 800,000 fund provided by Dubai Cares, a UAE-based global philanthropic organization, and administered by the IPA. The decision to incentivize learning innovations to help African students pursue their education followed the confinement measures imposed worldwide in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Around 190 countries had to close schools and universities, affecting more than 1.5 billion school-aged children - around 90% of the world’s student population.
The IPA is the world’s largest federation of publishers associations with 83 members in 69 countries. Established in 1896, the IPA is an industry body with a human rights mandate. The IPA’s mission is to promote and protect publishing and to raise awareness of publishing as a force for economic, cultural and social development. Working in cooperation with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and numerous international NGOs, the IPA champions the interests of book and journal publishing at national and supranational level. Internationally, the IPA actively opposes censorship and promotes copyright, freedom to publish (including through the IPA Prix Voltaire), and literacy.