Events | Highlights


23 Mar - 2021

Bologna Children’s Book Fair is sending a message of confidence in the future to the international community of children’s publishing with the new activities in the run-up to the 58th edition scheduled for 14 – 17 June 2021 at BolognaFiere, as well as new developments that will become permanent fixtures of the trade show. 

The BCBF Global Rights Exchange, the international copyright trading and content licensing platform has got underway in partnership with PubMatch within the framework of ALDUS – European Book Fairs Network, a project co-funded by the European Union as part of the Creative Europe programme. 

Open Up – The BCBF Skill Box is a completely new year-round digital environment reaching out to the Children’s Book Fair community throughout the year with skilling and learning opportunities in the many sectors involved in children’s publishing. 

Partnered by AIE – the Italian Publishers’ Association, BolognaFiere now embraces the wider publishing world with an exciting new series of events aimed at broadening BCBF’s reach to the publishing industry in general with the programme BolognaBookPlus. As was seen last year, the sector is very resilient, able to adjust to ongoing changes and the rise of new priorities. With BolognaBookPlus, BCBF takes an in-depth look at the new challenges facing a global industry as production, distribution and the reader attitudes change and new business models and technology pose issues of accessibility, sustainability and inclusivity. 

In addition, the BolognaRagazzi Award has a new crossmedia digial prize and a Special 2021 Poetry Category.


Open Up – The BCBF Skill Box is the first of the new projects, picking up on the wide-ranging 2020 edition that for the first time opened its “digital” doors to the full spectrum of enthusiasts and children’s book lovers as well as sector professionals. 

Bologna Children’s Book Fair has opened up a whole new virtual space where professions, skills and cultures meet, sparking exchange and growth. The calendar of events extends the trade show’s activities to cover the whole year with live and on-demand international conferences, masterclasses, portfolio reviews, workshops and special projects: unique opportunities to meet with experts and frontrunners in the world of books and content for children.

Upcoming events include: 23 March – the jurors selecting the Illustrators Exhibition will meet to answer questions from the 226 finalists; 9 April: a deep dive into the world of kids magazines with guest speakers from Anorak, Internazionale Kids, and Zeit Leo; from 26 April to 31 August – now in its second year – the digital Illustrators Wall will invite illustrators, graphic artists, and artists, whether affirmed names or at the outset of their careers to post their work and contact details.

More information on these and other schedules can be had at: http://www.bolognachildrensbookfair.com/en/open-up/10613.html


BCBF has closely followed developments of digital products for children since the 1990s. After exploring the first software programmes, ebooks, the world of Apps and all the other new ventures producing by the creative use of new technology, the Bologna Book Fair has this year completely overhauled its traditional BolognaRagazzi Digital Award, focusing on publishers’ efforts to develop cross-media projects. The aim of this entirely new BolognaRagazzi CrossMedia Award is to pick up the best editorial projects that successfully expand their narrative universe into other media or give narrative extension to projects developed for other media. The International BolognaRagazzi CrossMedia Award Jury – made up of experts in interactive and graphic design, new media, video games, film and television production – has the task of identifying books coming from multimedia projects and narrative that has successfully and convincingly crossed over from the traditional publishing genre and been migrated, intersected or extended to other platforms such as tv, films, videogames, mobile devices or smart speakers. Not only completing the array of BolognaRagazziAwards, this new prize writes a decisive new chapter in the landscape of children’s publishing awards.


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