“From the beginning, our role has been to democratise fashion. Today, that means making it sustainable: it’s the only way we’ll keep making great fashion and design available today, tomorrow and for generations to come. We will continue our work to lead the change towards a sustainable fashion industry”,
Anna Gedda, Head of Sustainability H&M Group
Among the inspiring speakers attending the Change Makers Lab were Joana Breidenbach, founder of betterplace.org and Betterplace Lab, Orsola de Castro, designer and co-founder of Fashion Revolution and Johan Rockström, professor and former executive director of the Stockholm Resilience Center and Jacob Park, Director of the BSR Sustainable Futures Lab. Together with Anna Gedda, Head of Sustainability H&M Group, Arti Zeighami, Head of Advanced Analytics & AI H&M Group and Cecilia Brännsten, Head of Environmental Sustainability H&M Group, participants were able to attend panel discussions, seminars and deep-dive sessions on various sustainability topics.
Among the areas discussed during the Change Makers Lab were fair labor practices along the value chain, the ethical challenges of artificial intelligence and an automated fashion industry, as well as inclusion and diversity in the global fashion industry. As part of a hackathon on circular design, experts and guests worked side-by-side on new approaches to a circular economy for textiles, while next door they discussed innovative solutions for a fossil-free transport in the future.
In the historical setting of the Berlin Postbahnhof, H&M Group presented the current and future projects of its multiple brands. With the help of the H&M Laboratory – which acts as a challenging partner for the H&M Group and provides the group with an outsiders’ perspective – guests were encouraged to explore the role of a designer and experience how the process of designing a product would look using augmented reality.
The truth is that sustainable fashion and beautiful design can co-exist, as proven in both H&M’s Conscious Exclusive and Conscious Spring collections, which will be available in stores in April in selected stores and online. Weekday showed that not only can textiles be recycled into new products, but also that garment ink has the potential to be brought back to life, as another example of H&M Group’s sustainability work.
Transparency ran like a red thread throughout the Change Makers Lab 2019, filtering out into different areas and practices. One example is the virtual factory tour, that offered guests the opportunity to see the process of textile production and gain exclusive insights from within the supply chain.
H&M Group Sustainability Report
Prior to the Change Makers Lab, H&M Group published its Sustainability Report 2018. Key features of the report include the company’s progress towards using only recycled and other sustainably sourced materials; 57% of all materials used to make garments are recycled or other sustainably sourced materials, while 95% of cotton used by the H&M Group came from sustainable sources.
Alongside this, H&M Group’s work on AI has proven useful in ensuring a good balance between production and demand, thus, saving energy, transport and resources.
The highlights from H&M Group’s Sustainability Report were also shared during the Change Makers Lab by Anna Gedda. The full report can be found here.
Contact H&M Group Media Relations:
Telephone: +46 8 796 53 00