Who will be the shining stars in 2023?

bench·mark: to evaluate or check by comparison with a standard.


As our entries grow from a slow trickle to a steady roar, we anticipate groundbreaking work yet again. As objective outsiders, we not only admire our entrants’ bravery to put their work up for scrutiny but saw over the years how important industry benchmarking is in maintaining and elevating standards.

Every year local and global events impact our work environment and in extreme cases (as we have all experienced) how we live, play, socialize, and even shop. Communication with our audiences needs to adapt to remain relevant, not only in what we say but how we portray and frame our messages and brands.

The SA Publication Forum competition offers a platform for benchmarking in the publication industry in South Africa. We strive to build a community of practice and provide an industry standard to establish the much-needed benchmark. What makes the Forum competition unique is that the industry (our entrants) provides the benchmark through their excellent work and we have the privilege to review it each year. We cannot think of a more legitimate benchmark – from the industry, for the industry. Because we have practicing publication and communication specialists on our team and judges panel, we stay in touch with the reality of tight deadlines and budgets, diverse and specialized audiences, and the need to stay relevant and on your audience’s page.

But don’t take our word for it. Read what some of our top entrants of 2022 had to say:

“Entering the SA Publication Forum competition is an incredibly beneficial opportunity for creators seeking recognition and growth. As a winner in 2022, the experience was truly transformative, opening doors to new networks, enhancing visibility, and boosting GAPdesign’s credibility as industry professionals. The competition not only validated our skills and expertise but also provided a platform to showcase our work to a wider audience, fostering meaningful connections and collaborations. Furthermore, the feedback from the judges was invaluable, helping us to raise the bar going forward.”

– Karin van Laeren, Editorial Director & Designer at GAPdesign (Winners of the Publication of the Year with the Career Guide published for UCT)

“The SAPF offers a wonderful way to celebrate the work we do with our clients annually, and showcases the excellent level of work and benchmarks within the industry each year. The constructive feedback provided by the judges for each award entry also serves to help us strive for continuous improvement. This opportunity to recognise and celebrate the hard work of the previous 12 months is always important.”

– Sarah Browning-De Villiers – Machine_ (Editor of the Year Awarded to Robyn Lane of Machine_)

“The SAPF is an excellent platform to measure your publication against other entries. The feedback is professional, honest, and helpful. Since there are not many competitions for publications, the SAPF is of utmost importance for critique (and compliments!) for any publication.”

– Johan Jack Smith (Finalist for the Publication of the Year award with the ATKV’s Taalgenoot)

Entries for 2023 is still open – we are still on YOUR page.