Researchers foresee economic changes for Cuban publishing houses

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Book production in Cuba, subsidized by the state, is almost unique in the world; now, experts from the School of Communication at the University of Havana urge the country to maintain the value of publishing as one of the key elements of Cuban culture, as the publishers faces changes in the near future.

For the moment, they say, publishers in Cuba are conceived as printers linked to certain institutions or political affiliations, or some stand in wait of a patron to finance certain publications. All are subsidized by the state and they respond more to cultural policies than to market laws.

However, in about five years, many of these institutions may become self-funded companies, warn media experts Yanet Blanco and Yamilé Ferrán in issue nine of Alcance, the Cuban Journal of Information and Communication.

In the article “De los encargos a los diálogos: Industria editorial cubana y políticas públicas de educación y cultura” [From Orders to Dialogues: The Cuban Publishing Industry and Public Policies for Education and Culture], the authors predict that a change in the publishers’ projects as well as their physical, organizational, and legal structure will be imposed, under new production philosophies and policies that are more open and flexible, looking for more strategic marketing.

They agree that this will involve a reanalysis of costs and a review of the criteria that have been endorsed previously regarding staffing, copyright, book aesthetics, themes, genre, and author.

“There will be a more current and critical view seeking to combine efficiency/profitability and quality of an industry/sector without sacrificing the humanistic vocation that has characterized the cultural policies of the Revolution and without subverting the values of a society where culture is not for profit,” they stated.

[Photo above: Jorge Luis Baños-IPS-Cuba]

For full article (in Spanish), see http://news.caribseek.com/27546-investigadoras-preven-cambios-economicos-en-las-editoriales-cubanas-cuba

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