Call for Contributions for Eco-Friendly and Fair: Fast Fashion and Consumer Behavior

Eco-Friendly and Fair:  Fast fashion and consumer behavior

Editors

Carolin Becker-Leifhold, University Ulm (carolin.becker-leifhold@uni-ulm.de)

Mark Heuer, Susquehanna University (heuer@susqu.edu)

Greenleaf Publishing and The Textile Institute invite contributions to a forthcomiti-logo-colour-small-jpegng title, which will address the economic, social, and environmental unsustainability of the fast fashion industry, as well as potential consumer behavior patterns supportive of the emerging eco-fashion industry.  The Textile Institute identifies textiles as the second largest industry in the world. The fast fashion segment is notorious for a supply chain that links low wage, often unsafe and environmentally degraded working conditions with cheap chic, fast fashion Western retailers.

In response to the 2013 Rana Plaza tragedy that resulted in the deaths of over 1,100 garment workers,  this collection will identify how consumer behavior approaches could  shift garment demand toward more sustainable, responsible consumption patterns in the future.  To this end, we seek contributions from academics, practitioners, policymakers, business leaders, journalists and entrepreneurs. 


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‘Business as an Instrument for Societal Change: In Conversation with the Dalai Lama’ launches in Brussels

The launch of Business as an Instrument for Societal Change: In Conversation with the Dalai Lama took place on the 10th September at the Power & Care (A Mind & Life Dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama) in Brussels. The author of the book, Sander Tideman, presented a copy to HH the Dalai Lama, who commented:

“Of course, this is very good. We need to bring compassion into business; compassion is the best motivation for any activity in the world. It benefits others as well as yourself, including your business”.

While forthcoming on other humanitarian and environmental issues, the Dalai Lama rarely speaks directly on the topics of business, leadership and economics.

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Why bother with sustainability if companies fail to consider Sustainable Development Goal 16?

The future of sustainability is focused around the new global Sustainable Development Goals launched in September 2015. Momentously, Goal 16 calls governments, business and civil society to:

“Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.”

Without peaceful, inclusive societies, sustainable development has no ‘enabling environment’. Yet, discussion of ‘peace and stability’ with many corporate representatives is often received with a quiet, “not really our responsibility” or “we don’t oTGG_Icon_Color_18perate in conflict zones”. But as part of a community, or part of a social ‘system’, business can work with other actors to support their peace efforts. Business contributions to peace are crucial for conflict-affected countries, as well as countries not seen as
‘conflict zones’ but which experience instability and low-level violence. Indeed business support for peace is important in all countries, and can include for example, supporting measures aimed at inter-cultural/faith/sect understanding and countering terrorism. If companies ignore how they impact (both positively and negatively) on a country’s conflict(s), and how they can proactively help prevent or mitigate violent conflict, what is the point of sustainable development when big business is such a key global player? And ultimately, peace means prosperity for both communities and business.  Continue reading

Democracy, democracy, and how to keep the sanity?

By Dr Katrin Muff

Note: this article is part of The Transatlantic Debate Blog series, which forms a conversation between Dr. Katrin Muff and Dr. Kathy Miller Perkins on business sustainability. Read the previous post here.

At the dawn of the primaries in the United States, there is much surprised rubbing of the eyes in front of the possibility that we might enter the U.S. election with a radical dreamer on the left (Bernie Sanders) and an egomaniac billionaire on the right (Donald Trump), both lining up the late-arriving Michael Bloomberg to represent the sane path down the middle. Both candidates play skillfully with two dangerous emotions: fear and anger. My grandmother had always advised that fear and anger were not wise counsellors. Continue reading

Why all of us should care about corporate culture

by Dr. Kathy Miller Perkins

Note: this article is part of The Transatlantic Debate Blog series, which forms a conversation between Dr. Katrin Muff and Dr. Kathy Miller Perkins on business sustainability. Read the previous post here.

On September 18, 2015 the Volkswagen Group received a notice of violation from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the United States for intentionally programming their diesel engines to activate emissions controls only during laboratory testing.  According to the New York Times, this “diesel deception” could cause hundreds of deaths in the USA alone, due to the tons of pollutants released into the atmosphere.  And an October 28th headline in  the  New York Times proclaimed that “Volkswagen, hit by Emissions Scandal, Posts its First Loss in Years.” Continue reading

Tim Mohin’s Top Tips for Treehuggers

Tim Mohin, Director of Corporate Responsibility at AMD

Tim Mohin, Director of Corporate Responsibility, AMD

Like jumbo shrimp or military intelligence, “corporate responsibility” is considered an oxymoron by many. People are sceptical of corporations, and with good reason. Massive corporate scandals ranging from the 2008 mortgage meltdown, to the BP oil spill, to the recent headlines about Wells Fargo and Barclays have left a trail of destruction. The cost to repair the damage has been borne by society in the form of taxpayer-funded bailouts and environmental cleanup. Growing distrust in corporations boiled over last autumn, sending young people into the streets in the Occupy Wall Street movement. So, at a time when trust in corporations has reached an all-time low, why is interest in corporate responsibility at an all-time high?
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For a Market Culture Beyond Greed and Fear

Occupy Wall Street protests across the world have revived interest in sifting “good capitalism” from “bad capitalism”. Ever since the financial meltdown of 2008, proponents of market capitalism have been trying to find ways to re-legitimise their creed. Now they fear that a wave of global discontent might overwhelm the only economic system that really works.

Even those who concede that Wall Street’s operations need to be reformed tend to consider any challenge to “the market” as blasphemous. Besides, they add, it’s easy enough to grumble about the failings of markets but where’s the alternative?

This view is both ill-informed and desperately lacking in imagination.

Notice that the protesters’ rallying call is “occupy” not “demolish”. Their claim to represent the 99% is not merely about severe disparity of incomes and assets. It’s a metaphor for society struggling to reclaim both markets and governance.
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The Map of Meaning: A Guide to Sustaining our Humanity in the World of Work

This book introduces a ‘Map of Meaning’ called the Holistic Development Model, which provides a clear, simple and profound framework of the dimensions and process of living and working meaningfully. At an individual level this book helps people to define and stay in contact with what is most important to them as they grapple with the real problems of daily life and suggests how they can stay in charge of keeping the human search for meaning alive, especially in the face of the challenges that exist in organisational life.

We have been applying aspects of the Holistic Development Model here in classes in management and leadership at Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School over the last four years. Students have found this frame an invaluable tool for orienting themselves in the face of what they see as an insurmountable range of paradoxes presented by our modern world. They ask themselves: how can I effect change ethically and meaningfully when my needs and those of the world, my values and the direction of society seem so at odds? Working with this frame has brought integration and empowerment, clarity and personal commitment to these students. It’s great to see it now in its published form.
Christian Penny, Director, Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School.

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