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Third Annual Accessible Publishing Summit Highlights

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

NNELS Accessible Publishing Summit is an annual event that brings together accessible publishing experts and key stakeholders in the creation and distribution of accessible books. In February of 2021, the third Accessible Publishing Summit was held virtually. This event brought together over 100 passionate participants to discuss the state of accessible publishing, the challenges being faced, and current work that is happening in the accessible publishing landscape. This work will help improve the lives of millions of people with print disabilities.

Goals and Outcomes

With each year we strive to increase our goals and outcomes to help improve accessibility in publishing and grow meaningful relationships with people in the publishing and accessibility industries. Below we highlight some of this past summits goals and outcomes:

  • Goal: Strengthen a sense of community for ongoing collaboration among the different stakeholder groups in accessible publishing.
  • Outcome: Holding the summit online allowed so many more people to attend lot of great connections were made, and attendees were able to have important, meaningful, real-time conversations with other key folks in the world of accessible publishing!
  • Goal: Gain awareness of the challenges faced by readers with print disabilities
  • Outcome: Every year, our tester demonstrations are one of the most important sessions of the summit. Centering the voices of people with lived experience is incredibly valuable, and we are lucky to have such a great team of accessibility testers. Their demonstrations, available on YouTube, really contextualize the issues we talk about in accessible publishing.
  • Goal: Increase understanding of recent developments and the current context with regards to accessible ebook and audiobook publishing
  • Outcome: At the 2021 Accessible Publishing Summit, we were able to hear from multiple experts and key individuals about what is happening in Canada and beyond! A great overview can be found in the "Industry Updates & Expert Perspectives" session:
  • Goal: Identify next steps as needed for ongoing work toward accessible publishing
  • Outcome: The summit gave people the time to share their perspectives and develop ideas and plans to work on! The Audiobooks group developed "Content Accessibility Guidelines for Publishers from Acquisition to Publication", and the Publishing Education Group had educators who were able to take what they learned directly back to their work!

We were able to record the sessions and share them on our YouTube channel! Playlists are listed as follows:

Thank you to everyone who participated this year! We are excited to see what next year's summit will look like and are eager to continue to work with all of you towards a more inclusive future!