Organizing programs for reading promotion and establishing related events – such as Reading Mondays at kindergartens and pre-school centers, Cup of Reading Clubs for Children and Young Adults, Festival for Appreciating Reading Promotors and Clubs, Designation of Iranian Book Capital and Festival for Bibliophile Villages of Iran with its sepecial feature helping reading to flourish – are all invaluable activities for book promotion in Iran.
But regarding an Iranian social charactersitic, being a ‘short-term society’ as some historical sociologists call it, the continuity of these events necesaites institutionalization and changing such a movement into a public demand by forming public groups for reading promotion and paving the way for their participation and presence in public policy makings.
Office of Cities and Villages Coordination
One of the ways to provide public groups of reading promotion with chances for participation in public policy makings was putting their and public and governmental representatives all together. With this outlook, three networks for reading promotion were formed:
- Reading Promotion Groups Network
- Bibliophile Cities Network
- Bibliophile Villages Network
- Representative of Books Promotion Networks
- Representative of Bibliophile Villages Network
- Representative of Bibliophile Cities Network
- Representative of Municipalities and Village Heads Organization
- Representative of Iranian National Commission for UNESCO
- Representative of Public Libraries Organization
- Deputy Minister in Cultural Affairs
- Two experienced book experts
Reading Promotion Groups Network
This network is made of volunteer and public reading groups, who while independently working, share their experiences, know about other groups, decide together on their common problems, seek one another’s opinion on new ideas, and have the chance of influencing the related public policies.
This network consists of 20 public groups and its coordinating council is formed through an election.
Its representative is also a member of the Council of Cities and Villages Coordination.
This network helps in running reading promotional events including Cup of Reading Clubs for Children and Young Adults, and was allowed in the preceding round to run the Festival for Appreciating Reading Promotors and Clubs ever after.
Bibliophile Cities Network
It is a communicational and coordinating institute that is active in exchanging common experiences and activities among cities that have ever been nominees for Iranian Book Capital. This institute is made of those cities’ cultural managers and mayors, and its coordinating council is elected by them.
Currently, over 20 city-nominees for Book Capital City are among its members, which is increasing every year.
This network’s secretariat is located in the Book Capital city and its coordinating council holds its meetings every month in different cities across the country. For the time being, the mayor of the city of Yazd is the head of its coordinating council. It has held four meetings so far in this year, and one of its future programs will be holding a seminar for mayors from all provincial centers of the country, with ‘reading promotion’ as its topic.
This network has also attained a good relation with the High Council of the Provinces, one of legislative institutions in cities to which city and village council representatives enter through election.
Bibliophile Villages Network
Villagers’ participation in policy makings is not only a new trend in reading promotion process but that it is regarded as a big step from a political and social point of view.
Bibliophile Villages Network is a communicational and coordinating institution that is active in exchanging common experiences and activities among villages which have ever been nominees for the Festival for Bibliophile Villages of Iran.
It was formed in the presence of the village chiefs, head of village councils, and village librarians from 40 villages and in four rounds. The members of its coordinating council were elected by the same attendants.
This network was established in March this year by the election of its coordinating council in Tehran, and got formally recognized through a ceremony at Tehran International Book Fair (TIBF).