New curriculum for fashion students promotes Compassion in Fashion

The workshop took place in Shanghai, bringing together some of the world’s top fashion-educators. It was led by Dilys Williams, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion at LCF and John Lau, Associate Dean of the School of Design and Technology also LCF. Their message underlined the corporate responsibility of the fashion world, and how fledgeling designers should enter the international world of fashion with a keen sense of sustainability, as well as consideration for the animals and environment which have historically been exploited by the industry.

Around 20 teaching staff from seven fashion colleges in China, Taiwan and Singapore attended, to learn about some cutting-edge fashion concepts. Shanghai International College of Fashion and Innovation (SCF) at Donghua University, School of Fashion Design of Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts, Fashion Institute of Design at Sanda University, Clothing Department at Ningbo University, Luxury and Innovation Institute of Shanghai campus of ESSCA School of Management, Department of Fashion Design at Shih Chien University from Taiwan, and LASALLE College of the Arts from Singapore were all represented at the event.

Opening the workshop, Director of Programmes for ACTAsia, Dawn Peacock, introduced the inspiration behind the new programme. “We believe that change begins with education,” said Dawn, “especially within the fashion schools that nurture future designers. ACTAsia aims to instil a sense of pride and responsibility among the young designers who enter the world’s second most polluting industry, and that means keeping real fur out of fashion, and limiting the toll of carbon emissions and chemical run-off which are devastating to nature. Jun Lee, Executive Vice Dean of SCF, confirmed it is critical that China’s fashion world addresses these issues due to its growing population and huge impact on the world. The audience was reminded of a statement by Director of the Sustainable Development Project of the China Textile Industry Federation’s Social Responsibility Office, Hu Kehua, who attended this year’s Fashion Forum, “There is no way to ignore China’s global sustainable development. After all, China’s textile industry’s production accounts for more than 60% of the world.”