MISSING LINKS – creating value in fashion

October 27th 2017, 9.30 am – 5.30 pm
Berlin University of the Arts, Foyer Concert Hall

Symposium is held in english language, registration is necessary
(infos are following)

Building links is at the heart of value creation in fashion. The clothes we wear link us to the identities we seek to assume. They invoke associations with distant places or desirable life styles. Sometimes such linkages are more than superficial associations created in the service of revenue generation. Fashion finds itself at a critical point. It has lost its exclusivity, no longer dictates trends, and seems to lose all relevance in view of the radical democratization of clothing styles. Familiar parameters between fast fashion and high fashion got lost. The speed of the economic dynamics harmed the appreciation of innovative ideas. Quality, innovative potential, originality and handwriting of the design are hardly noticed. Between high fashion and the mass market, fast fashion and slow fashion, trendy upcycling and the vast second hand market: Which links are we missing when we discuss the value of fashion? Is the dazzling multitude of value propositions just a way of concealing the division of labour between those who benefit and those who pay the price? Or is a renaissance of craft afoot – a reorientation of design principles in fashion towards durable materials and intrinsic quality? Which responsibilty should designers take? What role should fashion and their designers play in society in the future? In short: Are there values in fashion value?

Organized jointly by the University of the Arts Berlin (UdK), the Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space (IRS), Manchester University and Stockholm University, this international conference brings together academics, designers, activists, policy makers, fashion industry representatives and journalists to engage with the question of value and values in fashion. Funded by the Leibniz Association, it concludes the research project ‘Geographies of dissociation: The social construction of value from a spatial perspective’ carried out at the IRS in Erkner, Germany. Key findings of the project, which uses the example of the global fur industry to study the economic geographies of value creation, will be presented. Keynote lectures will address issues of value creation from the perspectives of fashion design and economic geography. Three panels will take on key themes addressed throughout the conference:

  • The formulation of policies at the intersection of activism, fashion industry and government
  • The role of the media, old and new, in ascribing and appreciating value in the fashion world
  • The value of design and the responsibility of designers who, by making aesthetic choices, effect material consequences across distances in time and space

The conference links up with UdK’s annual fashion show featuring the creations of fashion design graduates on the night of 26 October 2017, offering participants a first-hand encounter with the cutting edge of current fashion design thinking. An exhibition showing a selection of UdK design projects reflecting on values in fashion is accessible on the conference venue.

Program

9.30am
welcoming by
Professor Heiderose Kilper, director Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space
Professor Martin Rennert, president Berlin University of the Arts

10.00am
Project Presentation „Fur fashion and geographies of dissociation“ by Felix Müller,
Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space

10.30am
MEDIA PANEL The role of the media in ascribing and appreciating value in the fashion world

Ane Lynge-Jorlén, Lund University, Lund
Aya Noël, independent journalist, Brussels
Ingeborg Harms, independent journalist, Berlin
Katharina Pfannkuch, independent journalist, Berlin
Laura Paddison, The Guardian, London
in conversation with Oliver Ibert, Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space and FU Berlin

12.00pm           lunch break

1.00pm
Keynote „A Social Agenda for Fashion Policy Studies as Urban Creative Economy“
by Angela McRobbie, Goldsmiths University, London

1.30pm
POLICY PANEL The formulation of policy at the intersection of activism, fashion industry and government

Douglas Miller, Emeritus Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne
Julien Labat, EDUN, New York
Laura Ceresna-Chaturvedi, Clean Clothes Campaign, Berlin
Sarah Ditty, Fashion Revolution, London
Vera Baumann, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Berlin
in conversation with Jana Kleibert, Leibniz Institute for Research on Society and Space and Frankfurt University

3.00pm            coffee break

3.30pm
Keynote „globalization and technology (tbc)“
by Valerie Steele,Fashion Institute of Technology, New York

4.00pm
DESIGN PANEL The value of design, the future role of designers and their responsibility by making aesthetic choices, effect material consequences across distances in time and space

Anja Aronowsky Cronberg, Vestoj, Paris/London
Lars Paschke, Berlin University of the Arts, Berlin
Lucy McKenzie, artist, Brussels
Serhat Işik and Benjamin Huseby, designer GMBH, Berlin
Valerie Steele, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
Valeska Schmidt-Thomsen, Berlin University of the Arts, Berlin
in conversation with Ingeborg Harms, Berlin University of the Arts

5.30pm               get together