Scalability of multidisciplinary f-tech solutions 
        addressing future sustainability challenges


Fashion design for sustainability

Erminia D’Itria (POLIMI)

The principles and practices of sustainability are today at the center of the global debate on issues related to development models in industries with high cultural content such as fashion. The finite nature of the non-renewable resources provided by the Earth pushes, in fact, to rethink these models in order to address the current crisis and to direct towards a sustainable system capable of embracing with a holistic approach the four pillars of sustainability: the environment, the economy, society and culture. Therefore, the objective of this lecture is the introduction to and exploration of these fundamental components of sustainability: the four pillars.

Learning Outcomes

  • Define the broad concept of sustainability.
  • Identify and describe the four pillars of Sustainability.
  • Interpret the concept of sustainability, its pillars, and be able to explain them.
  • Give examples of the different pillars.
  • Compare different pillars within the sustainability dimension.

Towards a Sustainable Production Model for the Fashion Industry

Erminia D’Itria (POLIMI)

Today, the fashion system is based on an obsolete model that perpetuates unsustainable practices resulting in scarcity and pollution that affect the entire ecosystem, both planet and people. In this context, the proposed lecture will explore the impact of the Fashion industry, in the broad sense of fashion and textile sectors. The lecture will illustrate the increasing use of resources, as well as the resulting environmental and social impacts. Furthermore, within this lesson there will be a focus on the current business models (linear vs. circular) as a fundamental resource for the sustainable transition of the fashion system towards a responsible system.

Learning Outcomes

  • Define the broad concept of sustainability.
  • Identify and describe the four pillars of Sustainability.
  • Interpret the concept of sustainability, its pillars, and be able to explain them.
  • Give examples of the different pillars.
  • Compare different pillars within the sustainability dimension.

Sustainable Fashion Materials as a Positive Vector

Erminia D’Itria (POLIMI)

Today, the environmental and social crises have led industries to reconsider all production systems with a more conscious, accountable, and transparent oriented approach (Ellen Macarthur Foundation, 2017). Talking about sustainability today means referring to a system that is able to recognize and cultivate diversity, acting according to a holistic vision that allows us to live in the present without compromising the future. In this context, the following lecture will focus on the topic of innovative sustainable materials which are a fundamental resource for enabling sustainable design, as well as emerging new business models.

Learning Outcomes

  • Define sustainable materials.
  • Identify preferred materials.
  • Discuss the role of materials as sustainability vectors.
  • Choose preferred materials.
  • Compare different sustainable materials.
  • Propose sustainable material alternatives.
  • Select better materials alternatives to business as usual.


Erminia D’Itria (POLIMI)

The growing awareness about the different issues related to the impact of fashion processes and practices, as presented in the previous lectures, has led to an acceleration in the development of sustainable alternatives in the material field. In particular, this lecture will address how materials are vectors of sustainable solutions for the fashion system with a focus on the relationship between materials and waste: waste materials & materials from waste.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe the main characteristics of materials which are produced from waste.
  • Give examples of the different way to recover waste into sustainable materials.
  • Compare different ways of recover waste.
  • Select alternatives to standard materials.

Module: fashion-tech interventions

Textile industry and Supply Chain Management in Context of Industry 4.0

Vijay Kumar (HB))

Overview of Textile Industry 4.0 and framework and contributing technologies, supply chain 4.0 vs. KPIs, and key challenges.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe and define the framework of Industry 4.0 and supply chain 4.0 through contributing technologies.
  • Describe and design key challenges and KPIs.

Traceability along Garment Production Supply Chain

Bixente Demarcq (ESTIA)

Allow students to master the different stages in the garment production supply chain. The students will learn the specificities of the different technologies that allows traceability in this supply chain.

Learning Outcomes

  • Knowing the different stages in the garment production supply chain.
  • Knowing the challenges of traceability and the return of data to the consumer.
  • Traceability technologies.

Sustainability in Smart Textiles

Youngjin Chae (TUD)

Sustainability in innovative materials and products are challenging as the risks of novel technologies need to be quantitatively assessed. Sustainability in Smart Textiles are considered even more controversial as the analysis can be constrained be the characteristics and lifecycle of the product as well as their dual nature: textile and electronics. In this lecture, sustainability of smart textiles will be addressed through introducing interdisciplinary approaches between science, technology, design, and human sciences.

Learning Outcomes

  • Overview the challenges in sustainability of emerging technology and materials.
  • Identify the challenges in sustainability for textiles and electronic devices.
  • State the challenges in sustainability in Smart Textiles.
  • Describe approaches of circular economy for sustainable smart textiles.
  • Give examples of design driven approach to achieve sustainability in smart textiles.
  • Give examples of material driven approach to achieve sustainability in smart textiles.
  • Compare design and material driven approaches in social context.
  • Evaluate the meaning of circular economy to achieve sustainability in smart textiles.
  • Propose a new approach to further implement sustainability in smart textiles.

Fashion-Tech Today

Livia Tenuta, Susanna Testa (POLIMI)

An overview of the state of the art of the mapped definitions, sectors and topics of the Fashion-Tech through the presentation of best practice examples interconnected to main topics of future-forward fashion-tech applications.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe and define the main characteristics and roadmap of the Fashion Tech sector.

4.0 Technologies at the Service of Circularity

Alex Marquoin (ESTIA)

An overview about circularity in the industry and its objectives in the textile industry (reduce time to market, increase traceability and transparency, reduce environmental impact) through a presentation of 4.0 technologies at the service of circularity.

Learning Outcomes

  • Analyse the advantages and disadvantages of the design.
  • Inspect the different technologies of Industry 4.0.
  • Rate the sustainability of the design.
  • Argue the usefulness of each step of the design.
  • Support an argument with data visualization.
  • Prepare a report to explain the design.
  • Synthesize findings.

Module: FASHION-TECH business management AND IMPACTS

SDG Operationalisation for
Digital Fashion Value Chains

Jonas Larsson (HB)

An introduction on SDG progression tool to operationalise SDG goals to decide on strategic areas for digital fashion value chains, their improvements and transformation.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) relevant in the context of textile industry.
  • Describe SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) progression model.
  • Explain digital tools/approaches in textile value chain to achieve SDGs.

Perspectives on Digital Fashion Value Chain
and Business Model Development

Rudrajeet Pal (HB)

An explanation of digital fashion business model design and components to organise local production of digitised design through advanced manufacturing.

Learning Outcomes

  • Explain digital fashion business model design and components.
  • Explain organization of local production of digitized design through advanced manufacturing.

Business Model Scalability: on Scalability of Impacts and Associated Business Strategies

Rudrajeet Pal (HB)

Concept of scale and scalability in business model context, scaling from social innovation perspective, examples from projects and practice in relation to business model scaling

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe the main characteristics of the concept of scale and scalability in business model context.
  • Give examples of the different business model scaling aspects both in theory and practice.
  • Develop innovative scalability methods for business models to meet fashion tech solutions for products, processes and value chains.
  • Scaling from social innovation perspective.
  • Select the appropriate method for business model scaling.
  • Examples from projects and practice in relation to business model scaling.
  • Connection between business model scaling and their impact on society and sustainability.

On the Role of Policy-making and Digital Institutions to Support Digital Transformation

Olga Chkanikova (HB)

Concept of digital institutions, multi-level institutional perspective: need of aligning macro-, meso- and micro-levels practices/policies to support digital transformation, examples of digital institutions in relation to digital transformation.

Learning Outcomes

  • Explain the concept of digital institutions.
  • Explain the multi-level institutional perspective.
  • Give examples of digital institutions relevant for supporting digital transformation.
  • Discuss the importance of aligning digital institutions at macro-; meso- and micro-levels.
  • Examine institutional factors that affect development of fashion-tech interdisciplinary solutions for scaling sustainability impacts.
  • Analyze complementarities and potential contradictions between these institutional factors.
  • Based on analysis of institutional factors, propose business initiatives/areas to support and facilitate the development of digital institutions.