The Book Industry Study Group has voted to revise the organization’s bylaws in order to make it better able to respond quickly to changes in the marketplace,
Among the proposed changes, which must be approved at the BISG annual meeting on September 25, is reducing the number of board members from 33 to 14. Other changes include opening up the board nominating process to all BISG members, and spurring increased participation non-board members through the creation of three advisory groups and an Association Advisory Council.
BISG executive director Brian O’Leary said the advisory groups give members “a seat at the table” to address industry issues. The organization has already formed a marketing and communications group and a membership group, and a research advisory group is in the works.
The Association Advisory Council will be comprised of any book publishing industry association that wants to join. The objective is to create a venue where all publishing associations can contribute their perspectives and concerns about industry issues.
If the bylaws are approved at the annual meeting, the board will be reduced in mid-2018.
Commenting on the changes, Ingram’s Kelly Gallagher, who oversaw the committee that worked on the revisions, said: “The current structure and size of the BISG Board works against full engagement." Gallagher went on, saying this comes "at a time when the organization needs to move much faster to meet the changing needs of the publishing industry. A carefully structured, smaller governing body can develop the culture of clarity, governance, and data-driven decision making that is required to both set and refine strategic direction in a transforming market.”