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Prosperity Fashion 2025 : International Conference


Link: fh/prosperity-fashion
When Feb 13, 2025 - Feb 14, 2025
Where Firenze
Submission Deadline Jul 30, 2024

Call For Papers

The fashion system has been questioning for years how to decrease its negative impact on the environment and people, trying to improve individual elements: from natural, organic or recycled materials to zero-waste design methodologies, from slower production processes to socially responsible actions, from development of local supply chains to inclusive communication campaigns, from blockchain traceability of products to more reliable trend forecasts through artificial intelligence, from social engagement to large scale regulation.Thanks to the contribution of researchers, practitioners, and activists, a new awareness in civil society about the finite nature of materials and resources has been achieved, and the definition of standards and certifications regulating fashion processes and products towards circular and closed ecosystems has been refined and broadly disseminated.
This awareness, however, often conflicts with the need for constant and exponential economic growth, on which fashion brands base their creative direction, communication, branding, and sales decisions. The last few decades, marked by climate, humanitarian and health crises, have prompted debate about the prevailing economic model centred on ‘GDP Fetishism’ (Stiglitz 2009), which consists of holding Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as definitive and universal, and thus pursuing it at the cost of dramatically burdening environmental, human, and social resources.
Many researchers have gone back to the criticisms made by the Club of Rome in 1972 to verify and actualise them, fuelling the need not only for a new direction for economics and production, but also for new definitions and terminologies for this urgent change of pace: a-growth and post-development politics (Latouche 2012), post-growth fashion (Fletcher 2011), regenerative marketing (Kotler, Foglia, Sarkar 2023), restorative design (Antonelli 2019), sufficiency-based economy (Bocken et al. 2022) and post industrial design (Cross 1981), expressions of a new approach to nature, seen as our ally and subject of an ethic of care(Gambardella et al. 2024). Underlying all these reflections is the ambitious goal of redefining the concept of prosperity, hitherto understood almost exclusively in its economic sense, but instead indicating etymologically what is in keeping with hope, what is preferable for the future.
The concept of prosperity therefore requires a new interpretation consisting of ‘a fundamental revision of the relationship between the economic and the social’(Moore 2023), in a non-mercantile but relational prosperity (Latouche 2012). The dimension of relationality is a fundamental component of a new conception of prosperity, conceived as a resource of both economic and human value, generated by a community within environmental and ethical constraints. This idea of prosperity has as its objective the ‘common good’ (Sandel 2021) not only of the community, understood as a group of people, but also of the trans-species, post-phenomnological (van Dongen 2019) and more-than-human (Wakkary 2021) relationships that coexist in it.
Starting from this premise and adopting the methodologies of prosperity thinking (Vignoli, Roversi, Jatwani, Tiriduzzi 2021), the conference questions the future of fashion through its possible relationship with economy, environment and society. With its complexity, can fashion move beyond its singular profit-driven vision in order to develop the ideas of multi-faceted shared well-being? Can research into materials, processes, and fashion products shape new social and cultural models oriented towards prosperity? Can fashion be an example of this change that is capable of redirecting other knowledge and disciplines? Can the EU’s legal framework for sustainable development and the relevant EU legislation for the textile and fashion industries help drive the transition? Can fashion redirect the relationship between human and non-human, individual and territo ry, nature and technology? Can we move from the current ‘Fashion Prosperity’,understood as fashion’s pursuit of its economic growth, to ‘Prosperity Fashion’, a broad vision of the future and a transversal and contemporary focus on people, planet, economy, and technologies?
Scholars, researchers, educators, and practitioners in the fields of fashion theory, design, communication, history, and other social sciences in their many facets and interdisciplinary contributions — by way of example, economics, politics, sociology, and law — are invited to send a proposal that contributes to shaping the concept of prosperity fashion, through transdisciplinary looks and different methodological approaches. Contributions may investigate theories, ideas, utopias, visions, experiences, projects, both of the present and of the past, which are considered representative of an idea of prosperity fashion, that is, acts of change in a fashion system that can lead to shared and widespread well-being. Some possible, but not exclusive,areas of investigation may concern: materials and fabrics; design strategies;
education; technologies; geopolitics; manufacturing processes; economic and social models; codes of conduct; labeling and marking norms; sustainability and trademark protection; communication.
The conference is hosted by Fashion Highlight Journal.

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