Blog: Sexing up sustainability

Petah Marian | 16 November 2012

The power of the fashion industry to induce consumers to become more sustainable was a key theme of today's Sustainable Fashion Symposium at the Sri Lanka Design Festival.

Jonas Eder Hansen, development director of the Danish Fashion Institute, said currently "sustainability is not sexy," but that the industry's ability to make things desirable means it also has the capacity to change shopper behaviour.

He called on the industry to engage consumers, and have a dialogue with then on what sustainability is. The choices we make as consumers have great impact, said Eder Hansen, adding the apparel industry should look to influence consumers' broader decisions, for instance eating organic food or washing their clothing in cold water.

Meanwhile Mohan Munsainghe, Nobel Peace Prize winner and vice chair of UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and artist Anoma Wijewardene also called on the industry to try seek ways of creating an "emotional" link to climate change.

Munsainghe described his Sustainomusica initiative, which is looking to appeal to the "heart and not the brain" by incorporating sustainability themes into music - something he hopes the fashion world will look to integrate too.


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