BIC Leadership Initiatives

Page last update on 11th June 2020

BIC Green Hub
(for a greener supply chain)


On this page:

Introduction to BIC’s Leadership Initiatives
BIC’s Committees (Green, Physical, Digital, Metadata, and Libraries), are all about improving processes, creating and advising on standards and best practices and have green woven through their agendas. Better efficiencies and eliminating waste are at the core of becoming more sustainable.

Some examples include:

Metadata Capabilities Directory
BIC will soon be launching its Metadata Capabilities Directory(MCD), a new platform powered by BIC members, enabling participants to share information with each other about their own use of metadata within the supply chain. The MCD has been created as part of BIC’s Metadata Map project. Metadata underpins our digital age. It drives discoverability and sales, and therefore demands careful attention in terms of its initial creation, dissemination and ongoing maintenance.  Better use of metadata is critical to a more efficient and consequently greener supply chain as it can help minimise returns ensuring correct deliveries whilst enhancing targeted discoverability and sales of product. 

Follow #bettermetadata to stay up to date with developments.

Green BIC Brunches
Given that BIC is the dedicated book industry supply chain organisation in the UK, the environment is naturally high on our priorities for 2020 and beyond.  Following the success of our Building a Greener Business webinar held in March this year, we are delighted to be launching a series of online BIC Green Brunches. The BIC Green Brunches have been specifically created to explore key areas of the book supply chain that can and do impact on our planet’s environmental health.  Each BIC Green Brunch will be dedicated to one key area and the series as a whole is intended to join the book industry supply chain together in one place - exploring and inspiring change in response to environmental challenges. The 24th June 2020 session kicks our series off with a close look at the materials used to create a printed book. Further Green BIC Brunches are scheduled throughout the year. More information can be found by clicking the link below.

Follow #greenbicbrunches to stay up to date with developments. 

BIC’s Industry Returns Initiative
BIC’s Industry Returns Initiative (IRI) offers a solution to taking much of the cost out of managing returns. This is a critical area where the book industry can be greener by minimising returns and the operational effort involved. In June 2018, BIC’s IRI Rulebook was updated and refreshed. Find out more below.

BIC Realtime
BIC Realtime is a system that helps with reducing miscommunication, getting orders right the first time, enabling efficient order cancellations (reducing returns), and eliminating waste all of which helps to minimise an organisation’s carbon footprint. It establishes a set of standard messages to enable computers to communicate with each other via the internet in real time requesting product information and receiving an immediate response. This is for virtually all book businesses which hold databases of information (e.g. distributors, wholesalers and data providers) which could be of use to their trading partners (e.g. booksellers). Using XML communication over the Internet, businesses can communicate much more quickly, obtaining real time replies to their requests. This standard is recommended by BIC as the best way to implement these new messages between book businesses. Find out more below.

Green Supply Chain Award 
BIC will be working with the Green Book Alliance to launch a book industry green supply chain award to recognise organisations who are leading the way environmentally with their adoption of green best practices and lowering their carbon footprints. More information to follow.

Green Mailing List 
BIC has a mailing list specifically for individuals and organisations that are concerned about the green issues the book industry is facing right now. BIC Members and non-members alike are invited to join this mailing list to receive BIC's email campaigns concerning green supply chain news.

BIC’s Annual Building a Better, Greener Business Seminar 
This year's semianr at London Book Fair 2022 will take place on 7th April 2022 in the Olympia Room from 10am - 12 noon. Programme and speaker information coming soon.  

Building a Greener Business Seminar March 2020

Webinar Overview:
The book trade is increasingly global, and improving discoverability and tradability is good for business, but is it necessarily good for the environment? What is the size of our industry’s carbon footprint and its consumption of plastic? How can organisations increase their sustainability whilst reducing their overall environmental impact? And what does the future hold? With expert speakers from publishers, printers, distributors, booksellers and more, these questions were explored in this year's seminar which took attendees on a journey through the environmental lifecycle of a book from creation to consumer. 

More information can be found below.

Watch the full webinar on the BIC YouTube channel