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BISG Board Confirms Committee Goals For 2020

Monday, January 20, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Brian O'Leary

At BISG, the work required to solve problems affecting two or more parts of the supply chain often starts in our five standing committees. Each meets monthly to review current industry issues, discuss what BISG and its members can do about them, and plan steps to help the industry move forward.

The work of the five committees is outlined in documents we call charters, which are updated annually. The charters outline for each committee the current situation, committee objectives, the benefits of the work the committee does, current-year deliverables, and anything that might block progress toward objectives and deliverables.

For the last several years, the BISG Board has reviewed and approved these charters, as the documents reflect where our association has decided to use the resources provided by our membership. Last week, the Board approved charters that direct committee work in 2020. The documents offer a first look into what BISG is working on this year.

The metadata committee is developing a map of the metadata supply chain, which it plans to introduce this year. It is also examining ways to better use metadata to market books, a topic that is specifically addressed in a training workshop in New York on February 25. The committee has developed a "countdown calendar" for ONIX readiness that will be introduced next week, and it is working with Bowker to promote awareness and readiness for U.S.-market ISBNs that begin with the 979 prefix.

BISG's rights committee, which published a rights taxonomy last fall, is working now to create pilot projects to test and extend that taxonomy. As well, look for a market survey and white paper mid-year, followed by a two-hour program in September.

This year, the subject codes committee, which maintains BISAC and maps it to the current version of Thema, is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the BISAC classification scheme. The 2020 update will be published in the fall, after detailed reviews of categories that include Business & Economics, Science, Sports & Recreation, Technology & Engineering, and Young Adult Fiction. Anyone with a suggestion for an update or addition to the subject code list is invited to share it with the committee using this form - every suggestion is reviewed and considered.

Our supply chain committee has a broad mandate, with a focus in 2020 that includes:

  • Creating and publishing a map of the supply chain for book and non-book products, noting areas of supply, including third-party sales, gray-market and counterfeit sales, and demand.
  • Identifying and recommending changes to existing supply-chain standards supported by BISG.
  • Recommending promotional and communication options to bring information about standards to the supply-chain community.
  • Maintaining an inventory of supply chain-related issues, publishing this list on a monthly basis and inviting members to comment on the list.

Finally, our newest effort, the workflow committee (formed in 2019 as a successor to our content structure committee), will promote the content of the workflow “white paper” that the committee published in September 2019.
It is also working to develop a two-part summary (grid and glossary) of the tools and resources used to manage publishing workflows. With the metadata committee, it will work to develop, refine, and publish a map of the metadata supply chain, documenting strengths and weaknesses.

The links take you to the detailed charters, which I encourage you to review. Even in this brief overview, it's clear that the committees have a lot going on in 2020. More than 400 BISG members are registered for our committees, which will meet a combined 60 times this year. Committee efforts are a visible and important sign of what we value at BISG, and I hope to see you at an upcoming gathering. With occasional exceptions, the committees meet on a regular day and time in either the second or third week of each month. All meetings are listed on the BISG web site.


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