Fashion Revolution × EUR: How socially responsible are you really, fashion industry?

Start date

Wednesday, 25 Apr 2018, 16:00

End date

Wednesday, 25 Apr 2018, 17:30

Fashion Revolution Week

H&M has it, Mango has it, Zara has it. They call it Conscious Collection, Committed or Join Life – sustainable collections produced in environmentally friendly and ethical ways. On their website, Karl-Johan Persson, CEO of H&M states that it is essential and natural for the fashion giant to address sustainability proactively and to be a fair and equal company. Sounds promising, doesn’t it?

But when thinking of media images of garment factories in third-world countries or the collapse of Rana Plaza in Bangladesh in 2013, which caused the death of more than 1,100 garment workers, first doubts arise: How far can we trust such CSR statements? Do fashion companies really aim to be more ethical? And are these “conscious collections” actually sustainable?

Let’s look closer at the credibility of the industry’s CSR attempts, and let’s ask ourselves the question: Why do we still buy from such companies, although we know they might be less sustainable and ethical than they claim to be? What can we as consumers do to hold them accountable for their statements?

It’s not that we have no shopping alternative: Many smaller social enterprises in the fashion industry seek to enhance fair and sustainable production conditions. During this event, we will go live to Peru where Niek van Hengel, founder of Rotterdam-based ethical fashion company “Granny’s Finest”, is visiting his suppliers – from yarn manufacturers to sheep farmers. Via Skype, he will tell you more about his business and how Granny’s Finest is contributing to a fairer, more transparent fashion industry.

Find out more about Granny’s Finest here:

Join our lecture, discussion and live (skype) interview with

  • Dr. Yijing Wang (PhD in Corporate Reputation and Stakeholder Management), ESHCC Department of Media and Communication
  • Dr. Joep Hofhuis (PhD in Social and Organizational Psychology), ESHCC Department of Media and Communication
  • Niek van Hengel, founder and owner of Granny’s Finest

This event is organised in the name of Fashion Revolution, a global movement calling for greater transparency, sustainability and ethics in the fashion industry. During 23rd – 29th April, at the same time in which Rana Plaza collapsed in Bangladesh in 2013, Fashion Revolution runs a global campaign to encourage people to ask brands “Who made my clothes?”

Check out Fashion Revolution’s website here:

We’re happy to bring the Fashion Revolution to EUR and hope to reflect on fashion’s responsibility and our own role as consumers with many of you!