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CIBA runs several professional development and networking events throughout the year. In our first year, more than 550 people attended 30+ events from January to October. Speakers included booksellers, publishers, distributors, authors, and NGOs representing regions across Canada. 

These events are designed to enhance the professional capabilities of Canadian independent booksellers. Sessions cover a variety of topics, both timely and evergreen, and create opportunities to strengthen individual businesses and the sector as a whole. Check out upcoming events here.

In response to bookseller needs, these events are presented in a range of formats.


Lectures are focused on improving and supporting the business capabilities of indie booksellers via panel discussions, presentations, and information-sharing. Content is delivered by subject matter experts and practitioners from within the industry. Past topics include online retailing, virtual events, consumer analytics, social media marketing, increasing revenue through gifts and sidelines, and more.


Labs are small group workshops designed to be interactive for attendees and provide a space for peer-to-peer knowledge sharingSessions will often profile bookstore case studies (by topic area) that provide immediate value and usability.


These quick 30-minute sessions are meant to take the guesswork out of curating and stocking bookstore sections. These events explore a variety of themes and genres, in addition to diverse voices and cultural perspectives. Attendees learn from expert peers in the 5-5-5 format: 5 essentials they love to handsell, 5 upcoming books with buzz, 5 minutes for questions. 


In this series, booksellers can discover the titles that publishers think will be this season’s surprise hits. Over the course of four dedicated sessions each season featuring both multinational and independent publishers, attendees get an insider look at the seasonal releases they need to be aware of, why these books will have buzz, and how to hand sell them effectively.  


These are semi-regular opportunities to connect with industry peers, share ideas, and discuss the issues that affect the indie bookselling business. Each forum begins with a short, informal presentation or discussion on a specific topic. The floor then opens to an active group discussion. There are two streams: one for booksellers generally and one for children's booksellers. CIBA Bookseller Members are welcome to attend any session that corresponds to their business needs.  


These bite-sized, 30-minute sessions are perfect for busy booksellers looking to improve their business efficiencies. Past topics have included Canadian book sales, using SalesData, and flexing your terms to showcase sales performance.

Do you have an idea for a session?

Booksellers, publishers, and industry professionals have a wealth of knowledge and experience – we encourage you to share it!

If you are interested in contributing to our events as a content expert, session leader, or moderator, please get in touch with Nicola Dufficy today. We also welcome your feedback and recommendations for workshop topics and presenters.


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We wish to acknowledge the support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund.

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