Open Forum “Literacy and Democracy in the Era of Technology and Information: facts, challenges, strategies”

In our modern era, we face daunting challenges: misinformation runs rampant across Europe and beyond, significantly impacting our national interests. While social media saturates our lives, particularly captivating our youth, literacy rates decline. Additionally, the rise of Artificial Intelligence raises profound concerns, especially in education and the arts. Global crises dominate our attention, shaping public discourse.

As we confront these obstacles, safeguarding democratic principles is paramount. What strategic investments must society make to foster economic growth, achieve sustainable development goals, and safeguard cultural heritage? Amidst these deliberations, how does literacy contribute to shaping our collective future?

In the light of the 2024 European Parliament elections it is even more important to tackle these issue. Therefore, EURead, Diavazontas Megalono and Goethe-Institut Athen are inviting you to an open forum, which will be held on the 4th of June, 2024, at the premises of Goethe-Institut Athen (14-16 Omirou str., Athens, Greece).

Speakers and topics

‘To understand the full significance of reading, it is not enough to approach it functionally and ask, ‘What do we do with reading?’ We must also ask the reverse question, ‘What does reading do to us?’ For reading and writing are more than just functional skills: they are intellectual achievements that change the very way our brains are able to think’. Prof. Adriaan van der Weel will address these questions in his speech, ‘Reading to Think: The Ljubljana Manifesto on Higher-Level Reading,’ beginning a discussion on how we can safeguard this achievement and support our vulnerable democracies.

Prof. Venetia Apostolidou will share insights based on research and experience, which show that many children who used to read books systematically fail to progress to the next level of reading more complex texts, whether informational or literary, once they leave children’s books behind. In her presentation, ‘The Critical Transition from Childhood to Adolescence for the Development of Higher-Level Reading Competencies: Findings and Suggestions,’ she will explore the causes related to the role of education, the media, and teenage literature.

Though it is self-evident that literacy, from basic decoding to the higher order skills of critical literacy, is essential to modern participatory democracy, yet illiteracy rates across Europe and the British Isles have remained roughly the same at around twenty percent of the population. In this sense, tracking variations in PISA results, and obsessing, as politicians and the media do, over national league tables, is to pay attention to an illusion, because there is a persistent underlying correlation between poverty rates, rates of illiteracy, and poor educational attainment. Marc Lambert will argue that this makes the task of reading promoters complex, as we must address not a single, easily comprehensible issue, but rather the intersection of socio-economics, education, culture, and productivity.

If you believe in the importance of reading and literacy in shaping robust democracies and are seeking solutions and constructive dialogue among different key stakeholders, you are most welcome to join us.

The forum will be moderated by Prof. Maria Stratigaki.

Free entrance | Simultaneous English-Greek interpretation provided

About the speakers and the moderator

Prof. Venetia Apostolidou

Professor of Modern Greek Literature and Literary Education

School of Primary Education, Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki

Director of the Centre for Reading and Writing in School and Society  

Venetia Apostolidou is a Professor of Modern Greek Literature and Literary Education at the School of Primary Education of the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki. She is the Director of the Centre of Reading and Writing in School and Society. Her research interests focus on the fields of the history of Modern Greek criticism, post-war prose and literary education. Her latest book Literature at the University. The construction of Modern Greek Philology (1942-1982), Polis publications 2022, was awarded the Ourani prize of the Academy of Athens.

Prof. Adriaan van der Weel

Emeritus extraordinary professor of Book Studies

University of Leiden

The Netherlands

Adriaan van der Weel is emeritus extraordinary professor of Book Studies, University of Leiden, the Netherlands. His research focuses on the screen revolution in textual communication and reading. As vice-chair of the COST Action ‘E-READ’, about the future of reading in the digital age, Van der Weel was co-author of the ‘Stavanger Declaration Concerning the Future of Reading’ (2019) and the ‘Ljubljana Manifesto on Higher Level Reading’ (2023). His latest book, co-authored with Ruud Hisgen, is entitled The reading human: How the book defines our existence (2022; in Dutch).

Marc Lambert

CEO

Scottish Book Trust

United Kingdom

Marc Lambert graduated from Edinburgh University in 1986 with an MA Hons degree in History. He has worked for Waterstone and Co. as a main fiction buyer, and for Penguin Books in Italy and the UK. After four years of writing about and interpreting contemporary art at The Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, he joined The Edinburgh International Book Festival in 2000, becoming Assistant Director. In 2002 he was appointed CEO of Scottish Book Trust. Since then he has grown the Trust from a small organisation of three people into a national charity with 70+ staff, winning 10 Arts & Business and Business in the Community awards. A Trustee of Literature Alliance Scotland and the Netherbow Trust he chaired the Scottish Government English Excellence Group, and was a member of the Scottish Government’s Standing Literacy Commission. He has written widely both on the visual arts, and on book and literacy related subjects. 

Moderator

Prof. Maria Stratigaki 

Professor Emeritus at the Department of Social Policy of Panteion University

Deputy Mayor for Social Solidarity, and Equality in the City of Athens 

Maria Stratigaki is Deputy Mayor for Social Solidarity, and Equality in the City of Athens since 1st January 2024. She has served at the same position from 2014 to 2019. She is Professor Emeritus at the Department of Social Policy of Panteion University. She served as General Secretary for Gender Equality (2009-2012) and worked at the European Commission (1991-1999). Her research interests are gender equality policies, gender-based violence and gender in migration She was scientific coordinator of EU funded FP7 research projects on Gender and Gender Equality Policies. She has published in Social Politics, the European Journal of Women’s Studies and Femina Politica. She is the author of the books: The Gender of Social Policy (2007) and Gender Equality Policies: UN, EU, Greece (2021). She is a founding member of the first European Feminist Think Tank Gender 5+. 

Under the auspices and with the support of

Under the auspices

With the support of Greek Collecting Society for Literary Works

Media Sponsors

Annual General Meeting 2024: Promoting literacy in a changing world

Modern society is facing big challenges: all over Europe (and beyond), people are worried about misinformation and the impact it has on nations.

Social media is by now ever-present in our daily lives, and the group of (even young) children using them keeps growing. Meanwhile, their reading skills decline. The development of Artificial Intelligence is reaching a momentum that is being followed closely (and with fear?) in the fields of education and the creative sector. World crises dominate mainstream media.

In this context, it seems even more essential for reading promoters to fight illiteracy and to promote reading skills in general. We see a clear correlation between declining reading skills in society and the aforementioned problems. But how do we get that message across to parents, teachers, and our financial partners and promoters? How can we raise awareness of these issues at local, national, and European levels? What is our responsibility, and what is our response?

The AGM 2024 will be held on the 3rd and 4th of June, 2024, in Athens (Greece).

Location: Premises of Goethe-Institut Athens, 14-16 Omirou str., Athens, Greece.

AGENDA

3rd June, 2024

12.30 – 13.00 Registration

13.00 – 13.20 Welcome notes by the special guests

13.20 – 13.30 Official opening by Dr. Jörg F. Maas, Chair of EURead

13.30 – 14.15 EURead Strategic Vision and List of Recommendations – Discussion for further actions

14.15 – 14.55 Welcoming our new members

14.55 – 15.20 The Greek perspective on Literacy and Reading Promotion

15.20 – 15.50 Coffee Break

15.50 – 16.25 What does science say about reading? Keynote speaker Prof. Adriaan van der Weel on higher-level reading, books and scientific insights

16.25 – 17.45 Let’s Talk About… Early Literacy

  • Update from the Global Network for Early Years Bookgifting
  • Presentation of the Bookgifting Toolkit
  • Some good practices from our members

17.45 – 18.00 Reflections on Day 1

20.00 – 22.00 Official Dinner

————-

4h June, 2024

9.00 – 09.30 Warm-up

9.30 – 12.30 General Assembly – Members Only! Finances, Legal Matters, Reports from the EURead Teams etc.

12.30 – 13.30 Lunch (Street Food Challenge)

13.30 – 14.20 Let’s Talk About… New Media

  • Reading promotion initiatives in Eastern Europe – Goethe Institute Athens
  • “Innovative Approaches to Digital Reading in Education” – Sonja Hoge, Managing Director of Onilo

14.20 – 14.30 Short Coffee Break

14.30 – 16.00 Let’s Talk About… Reading Promotion and Politics

  • Good Practices in the field of reading promotion and politics

16.00 – 16.15 Members’ Reflections and Closing of the AGM 2024

———–

18.00 – 20.30 Open Forum “Literacy and democracy in the era of technology and information: facts, challenges, strategies”

PISA in Bologna: how to fight low reading skills – A Panel Discussion during BCBF 2024

For the 61st time, the Bologna Children’s Book Fair 2024 will attract publishers, authors, illustrators, and book lovers from all over the world. While the book fair is dedicated to the development of a vital industry, most professionals in the book industry are aware of the declining reading skills of both children and adults.

PISA results provide scientific proof of this downward trend, sometimes referred to as the reading crisis. While Bologna is filled with great new books each year, the question remains: what if no one reads them? What if books become a relic of the past in the future?

From 9:30 to 10:20 on April 9, 2024, during a panel discussion in the Authors’ Café (Hall 30, Bologna Fiere), reading promoters from both inside and outside the publishing industry will shed light on this question.

Moderated by Daan Beeke (Stichting Lezen / EURead network manager), the panelists will discuss whether reading promotion could be a solution and how publishers can play a role in this process.

“Bologna Children’s Book Fair gives us a great opportunity to spotlight reading promotion. To ensure all children read and to combat illiteracy, we must address this issue here and now, seeking comprehensive solutions and stable partnerships across all sectors,” says Mr. Beeke.

During the panel discussion, Elaina Ryan (Children’s Books Ireland), Lovisa Fhagher Logothetis (Bonnier Family Foundation, Sweden), and Anna Zdrojewska-Zywiecka (Mamania/Relacja sp. z o.o. Publishing Group, Poland) will shed light on this question. Attendees will also learn more about what lies at the core of reading promotion.

If you are interested in this topic and are attending the Bologna Children’s Book Fair 2024, join us for a cup of coffee and a lively discussion on the future of reading and books!

All visual materials for the event are created by Valerie Weilheim.

About the panelists:

Elaina Ryan

Elaina grew up in Wexford and Waterford. She holds a BA in Languages and Cultural Studies from University of Limerick and an MLitt in Publishing from University of Stirling. She has a background in children’s book publishing and is co-Artistic Director, with Niamh Sharkey, of Towers and Tales Children’s Book Festival in Lismore, County Waterford. Elaina has led the team in Children’s Books Ireland since 2013.

Lovisa Fhager Logothetis

At the Bonnier Family Foundation Lovisa Fhager Logothetis leads the work with several reading promotion methods, one that aims to get young people to read aloud to younger children during the first week of the summer holidays. Lovisa is an expert in children’s rights. She holds a master’s in political science and has a background in organizations Amnesty International and Unicef and is part of several different expert networks for children’s rights. She previously led a civil society organization that worked on equality issues that distributed over a million books to Swedish children and youths for free.

Anna Zdrojewska-Zywiecka

Anna studied Cultural Studies at the University of Warsaw and the University of Amsterdam. She is also an MBA graduate of the SGH Warsaw School of Economics. In 2010 she founded Mamania publishing house that specializes in parenting and children’s books. Anna and her company are among the founders of the Universal Reading Foundation. The foundation is supporting children’s development and supporting adults in their parenthood, showing the great importance of reading in both those areas.

Daan Beeke

Daan Beeke studied Dutch Literature at Utrecht University and started his career as high school teacher of Dutch Literature and Language. Since 2008 he works for the Dutch Reading Foundation (Stichting Lezen) as a domain specialist, working on high school projects and programs. He is also involved in the EURead network and in the Global Network for Early Years Bookgifting, as a network manager. 

Graphic design:

Valerie Weilheim

Valerie holds a degree in Literature from the Universidad Central de Venezuela (Magna Cum Laude, 2019). She works as an editor, illustrator and reading promoter. In Venezuela she has been a workshop leader for Rana Encantada since 2010, is part of the evaluation committee for children’s and young adult books of Banco del Libro and is the co-founder of the fanzine publisher Perro Amorfo (2017). She also collaborates with the digital magazine Pez Linterna and the Asociación Artística-Sociocultural Mestiza (San Sebastian).

Portfolio: https://www.behance.net/valerieweilheim Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/valerieilustra

Empowering European Literacy: Insights from the Second Day of European Authors Conference

The 2024 Day of European Authors, initiated by the European Commission, took place on March 25, 2024. Teachers, librarians, students and book lovers from across Europe came together to celebrate the crucial role of writers, poets, translators, and illustrators in shaping the cultural diversity and richness of European literature.

Screenshot from the website of the European Commission – Day of European Authors

Among the various activities, the European Commission organised a conference in Leuven, Belgium, bringing together key stakeholders in culture, education, reading, and literacy to discuss potential solutions to the declining reading skills among European citizens.

The conference commenced with opening remarks by Ms Iliana Ivanova, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, who said that “1 in 4 fifteen-year-olds don’t have the appropriate reading skills in the European Union”.

During the first panel, moderated by Elaina Ryan (CEO Children’s Books Ireland), panelists Dr. Dirk Hastedt (Executive Director, International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievements (IEA) and Dr. Tiziana Mascia (Adjunct Professor of Children’s Literature at the University of Urbino and Representative of the European Literacy Policy Network (ELINET) highlighted issues related to declining reading abilities based on assessment surveys like PIRLS and PISA, as well as the lack of motivation for reading among children.

“We talk about a lost generation to COVID but what about the lost generation from not reading?”, asked Dr. Hastedt.

Pledging for a common understanding and definition of what reading is, Valentina Stoeva (Chairperson of Reading Foundation Bulgaria and representative of EURead network) discussed the work of reading and literacy promoters. She underscored the critical role of families, kindergarten teachers, and librarians in both public and school libraries. Stoeva emphasized the need for support, based on research and carefully selected, high-quality books, to effect change in Europe’s reading landscape.

“Reading is a basic human right, and although it is not guaranteed by nature that individuals will be able to learn to read, we as a society must work on supporting everyone to become a reader, if we want to preserve the core democratic values and ensure that no one is left behind.” – said Valentina Stoeva.

The second panel, moderated by Daan Beeke (Domain Specialist at Stichting Lezen and Network Manager at EURead), delved into the importance of families, librarians, and reading promoters in shaping children’s interests from an early age, thereby preparing them for school and life. Presentations included the Flemish Reading Plan by Noa Heyndrickx (Literatuur Vlaanderen, Flanders, Belgium) and insights from Simon Bequoye (Iedereen Leest, Flanders, Belgium) on the significance of initiatives like BookStart and the role of libraries in providing access to books for families.

Benjamin Kesteloot (Director, Médiathèque départementale du Pas-de-Calais, France) and Laura Guindal Martínez (Deputy Director General for Coordination of Libraries at the Ministry of Culture, Spain) shared some insights of the projects they are developing in the field of reading. Special focus in this panel was put on Ukraine, with the keynote and thought provoking speech on the importance of “books as shelters for the mind” by Olena Odynoka (Deputy Director for International Cooperation, The Ukrainian Book Institute).

The third panel featured insights from three young individuals who shared their perspectives on reading and the curriculum.They highlighted the importance of encounters with authors and shared their personal experiences as avid readers, which often differ from the interests of their peers.

The second day of the conference saw fruitful discussions on various topics including the book sector, literary pedagogy, and promoting reading in the digital age. Key messages emerged, emphasizing:

  • The importance of early reading and shared reading for pleasure among parents and children, including the Early Years Bookgifting programmes.
  • The crucial role of reading promoters in supporting families, healthcare service employees, and educators with advice and books.
  • The significance of libraries, both public and school, and the need for support from national and local governments to ensure access to new books and knowledgeable librarians.
  • Closing the gender gap in reading by publishing stories that appeal to both boys and girls.

Looking ahead to the 2024 European Parliament elections, the conference participants expressed optimism about the positive impact of the event on the future of the European Union and Europe as a whole.

EURead members, participating in the Conference:

EURead members are participating in the conference for the second Day of European Authors

In the context of the second edition of the Day of European Authors (25th of March 2024) the European Commission organises a conference with the objective to foster collaboration between the book and the education sectors to tackle declining reading skills and habits among young people.

Elaina Ryan (Children’s Books Ireland), Daan Beeke (Stichting Lezen) and Valentina Stoeva (Children’s Books Foundation / Reading Foundation Bulgaria) will participate in the main panels of the conference, representing the EURead network and shedding light on the crucial role of reading promoters in tackling illiteracy.

The event will be opened by Iliana Ivanova – European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, and Matthias De Moor ‐ General Representative of Flanders to the European Union.

More about the Conference and the Day of European Authors: https://culture.ec.europa.eu/event/2024-day-of-european-authors-conference

What happened in 2023? The EURead network’s review

A lot has happened for EURead in 2023.

We welcomed new members Libranda (Spain), Kitabistan (Azerbaijan), the Universal Reading Foundation (Poland) and the Reading Foundation (Bulgaria) and grew to 35 member organisations from 23 countries.  You can read about their good work at our newly launched website – the launch of it was another highlight of 2023. 

A big success was our Annual General Meeting in Sofia, Bulgaria. Our AGM is still at the core of our activities as a network, helping our members to learn from each other and be inspired. New to this AGM was a press conference, which served the purpose of raising awareness about the importance of reading in Bulgaria. 

But we did not only meet at our own main event: some EURead members are active contributors to the regularly held online meetings of the Global Network for Early Years Bookgifting. Please visit their website to learn more about those online meetings. 

Our members also participated in important events across Europe: EURead members organised, moderated and/or participated in presentations and panel discussions at events like the World Literacy Summit, the Bologna Bookfair, the Day of European Authors conference, the Literacy Conference in Riga and the Frankfurter Buchmesse

EURead also signed the Ljubljana Manifesto, and was represented at the launch in Ljubljana. 

And yet we should not only look back at what EURead did as a network, but what all EURead members did and are doing in their own countries. Please stay tuned and we will keep you updated about their and our own activities.

Because 2023 made it very clear that reading promotion is essential for healthy societies, and we need to keep up the good work, both at a national and at a European level. 

Day of European Authors: An Open letter to Commissioner Iliana Ivanova

European Commission

Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth

Commissioner Iliana Ivanova

15.11.2023

Dear Commissioner Ivanova,

First of all, I would like to congratulate you for becoming Commissioner for Education,
Youth, Sports and Culture – one of the key responsibilities to shape the Europe of tomorrow. We wish you and your team lots of success and a portion of fortune which is always needed for lasting and sustainable impact.

I am also writing today as CEO of the German Reading Foundation and Chair of EURead, the European network for reading promotion and literacy, representing 35 organisations and foundations from 23 countries across Europe to express our concern about the visibility and importance of the lack of reading competence and literacy in Europe.

More than 73 million adult Europeans cannot properly read and write.

More than one fourth of all children in Europe leave primary school without having the reading competencies they should obtain.

More than 4 out of 10 families do not read aloud to their children at home.

More than 23 percent of youth lack the reading competence they need to start in a successful life.

We as EURead members believe and are committed to change this: in each of our countries and across Europe for a better future of each child – but also for a better future of Europe.

Therefore, we have been quite euphoric about the European Commission’s decision last
year to initiate and celebrate the Day of European Authors – organized by the Creative Europe – Culture team. Various European networks have been invited to contribute ideas including libraries, booksellers, authors, translators and reading promotion and literacy organisations like EURead.

Despite the fact that we see value in bringing actors from different areas together, we felt a clear disappointment that the Creative Europe team expected us to contribute to the Day of European Authors but being unable to cover costs for important events, structures and occasions and campaigns.

We would have wished to see a clearer and measurable commitment from the European Commission to not only bring together authors from different countries and languages, but to put more efforts and financial commitments for reading promotion and literacy across Europe. Because without these important competencies, there will be shortly and in the near future no need to support authors, booksellers and libraries anymore when the diminishing demand and needs of young people for books and stories continues in the way it currently does.

We would like to encourage you and the European Commission to put a much stronger emphasis and financial support to reading promotion and literacy programs and campaigns.

The Day of European Authors is maybe one occasion to shed light on the need to invest more in reading and literacy. Europe needs far more initiatives and lasting commitment to overcome the devastating and alarming figures about the literacy rates of children, youths and adults in Europe.


Sincerely yours,

Dr. Joerg F. Maas

CEO of German Reading Foundation

Chair of EURead

EURead supports the Ljubljana Manifesto on Higher-Level Reading 

Issued on the 10th of October 2023 at a special press conference in the capital of Slovenia, the Ljubljana Manifesto on Higher Level Reading highlights the importance of book reading in the digital age.

Higher-level reading exercises metacognition and cognitive patience, expands our conceptual capacities, trains cognitive empathy and perspective-taking. These social skills are indispensable for informed citizens in a democratic society, the Manifesto emphasises. It calls for support of these skills from governments and society in general. 

The Ljubljana Manifesto was written by four reading and publishing researchers: André Schüller-Zwierlein, University of Regensburg, Germany; Anne Mangen, University of Stavanger, Norway; Adriaan van der Weel, Leiden University, Netherlands, and Miha Kovač, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

The Manifesto is supported and signed by the German Academy of Language and Poetry, the International Publishers Association (IPA), the Federation of European Publishers (FEP), PEN International, the International Board of Books for Young People (IBBY), the members of the European literacy network EURead, and the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA). In Slovenia, the Manifesto is supported by the Slovenian Book Agency. 

The document will be published today by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (Germany), Le Monde (France; online edition), Público (Portugal), Népszava (Hungary), Latvijas Avīze (Latvia), Dennik (Slovakia) and Delo (Slovenia).

During the press conference at Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana, the authors of the Manifesto, along with special guests, discussed the significance of higher-level reading in the digital era. They highlighted its role in training analytical and critical thinking, fostering cognitive patience, and nurturing empathy – vital social skills for citizens in a democratic society.

Among the speakers in the Agenda were: Assist. Prof. Asta Vrečko (Minister of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia), Jose Borginho (Secretary General of the International Publishers Association), Anne Bergmann-Tahon (Director of the European Publishers Association), Daan Beeke (Dutch Reading Foundation; EURead Network Manager), Prof. Adriaan van der Weel (Leiden University; co-author of the Manifesto) and Prof. Miha Kovač (University of Ljubljana; co-author of the Manifesto and curator of the Slovenian program at the Frankfurter Buchmesse).

From left to right: Jose Borginho, Daan Beeke, Anne Bergmann-Tahon, Adriaan van der Weel, Minister Asta Vrečko, Miha Kovač

In his speech, Daan Beeke pointed out that:

‘Members of EURead know that reading is the key to a better society. Reading, to us, is a basic right.’

He briefly discussed three important themes from the Manifesto: turning the tide of declining reading skills, reconsideration of the role of higher-level reading in the digital era and emphasizing the necessity of resilient readers who are well-versed in higher-level reading for a thriving democratic society.

Beeke reflected on these themes from the perspective of the reading promoters, who are members of the EURead network. He emphasised the importance of early bookgifting programs, which lay the foundation for higher-level reading later in life.

‘Higher-level reading at a later age, can only be achieved when we start with the very, very young.  And that means we need to bring books to babies and toddlers, and help their parents to let their child grow up in a language rich environment.’

By signing the Manifesto, EURead hopes to help raise awareness that the challenge we are facing is very urgent.

Information on the Manifesto and its professional background: https://readingmanifesto.org/

The Ljubljana Manifesto is one of the pillars of Slovenia’s Guest of Honour program at the Frankfurter Buchmesse. For information about the planned events, check here.

EURead visits the Bologna Chidren’s Book Fair

On April 8th, 2023, EURead organised a panel discussion at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. Panelists from the Global Network for Early Years Bookgifting discussed a range of topics.

The panelists were: Emmi Jäkkö (Lukukeskus, Finland), Lotte Baert (Iedereen Leest, Flanders), Marijke Bos (Stichting Lezen, Netherlands) and Julia Norrish (Book Dash, South Africa). The panel was moderated by Daan Beeke (Stichting Lezen, Netherlands).

This year’s edition of the BCBF seemed to have more room for literacy skills and reading promotion. We hope this trend will be continued in the next editions.

Annual General Meeting 2023

On June 5th and June 6th, our Annual General Meeting will take place in Sofia, Bulgaria. Our member Detski Knigi Foundation is hosting this meeting. The venue will be the European Commission premises in Sofia.

Our member Detski Knigi Foundation is hosting this meeting. The venue will be the European Commission premises in Sofia.

Agenda: 


Monday
, June 5th

Location | European Commission Building (Sofia, 124 Georgi S. Rakovski str.)

9.30 – 10.00 Planned interviews

10.30 – 11.30 Press Conference

12.30 Registration

13.00 Welcome speeches by

Mr Boyko Blagoev, Head of Communication unit at Representation of the European Commission in Bulgaria
Mr Miroslav Borshosh, deputy-mayor of Sofia
Katarina Barley, vice-president of the European Parliament /video/

13.30 Official opening, Dr. Jörg F. Maas, Chair of EURead

13.45 Panel 1 | Moderator: Dr. Jörg F. Maas, Chair of EURead
The State of Literacy in Europe: How can we do better? (A Brief Overview)
Speaker: Marc Lambert, The Scottish Book Trust

14.30 Coffee Break

14.45 Panel 2 | Moderator: Gerlien van Dalen, Co-Chair of EURead
Open Mic #1
The German National Reading Alliance and National Reading Plan (Jörg F. Maas)
Reading owns! initiative (Lovisa Fhager Logothetis)

15.15 Global Network Inspirational update
 Chaired online by Peter Jenkins, Book Trust (UK)

16.15 Panel 3 | Moderator: Elaina Ryan

Open Mic #2

Pilot reading promotion programme in 10 primary healthcare centers of Attica region (Ava Chalkiadaki)

16.30 EURead Membership Welcome certificates

17.00 End of day one

19.30 Dinner
Dinner speech by Manol Peykov – translator, publisher, member of Parliament and Man of The Year 2023

Tuesday, June 6th

Location | European Commission Building (Sofia, 124 Georgi S. Rakovski str.)

9.00 General Assembly: Legal Matters and Finances

10.00 Panel 4 | Moderator: Diana Gerald, Co-Chair EURead

Open Mic #3

Introducing the Austrian “Was steht da?” (Laura Albers)

10.15 Coffee Break

10.30 Insights about the state of literacy and reading in Bulgaria: preparation for implementing
the Read-Aloud Monitor

Speaker: Valentina Stoeva, Children’s Books Foundation (Bulgaria)

11.15 Panel 5 | Moderator: Emmi Jäkkö
Open Mic #4

How to promote reading with teenagers and young adults (Anne Bergman-Tahon)

Men’s & boy’s reading – problems and approaches to dealing with low readership rates among these groups (Marcin Skrabka)

11.30 Update on the new website implementation / Discussing common network communication strategies

Speakers: Daan Beeke and Marc Lambert (website); Emmi Jäkkö (communication)

12.30 Lunch (Ugo Pizza, 2 Han Krum str.)

Location | Sofia City Library – American Corner 4A, Petko Slaveykov square, fl. 1

13.30 Panel 6 | Moderator: Dr. Jörg F. Maas, Chair of EURead
Reviving Europe Reads

Speakers: Daan Beeke, Valentina Stoeva

14.15 Funding from EU / EU projects

Representatives from Creative Europe Desk

15.00 Where to next? Feedback from the AGM in Sofia

15.30 Closing of the AGM

16.00 End of day two

Full agenda: EURead_AGM2023_agenda

Contact: daan.beeke@euread.com