Politecnico di Milano (ITALY)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2021 Proceedings
Publication year: 2021
Pages: 7842-7852
ISBN: 978-84-09-27666-0
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2021.1576
Conference name: 15th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 8-9 March, 2021
Location: Online Conference
In the last decades the traditional Fashion sector has been suffering from an increasing complexity due to turbulence and saturation of global markets and to the difficulty of identifying solid consumption behaviors’ patterns because of consumers’ multifaceted approach to fashion.

In this context, within the framework of a digital transformation that is re-defining the very meanings of production, distribution and services, and consumption, digital technologies–from wearable technologies and communications to 3D software for design and visualization, from Big Data to Advanced Manufacturing, from RFID to Internet of Things–have been representing the opportunity to support the competitiveness of the European fashion industry and in particular of the Fashion-tech sector, at the crossing of fashion, textile, electronics and the digital paradigm. The raise of Fashion-Tech stands into the potential offered by 4.0 components, namely smart objects, smart factories and smart networks (Bertola, Colombi, Vacca, 2018) to nurturing design processes and tools to enable, reactivate and reconfigure relations and processes in research, production, logistics and retailing of the traditional fashion supply chain.

These new opportunities are pushing fashion companies and entrepreneurs to embrace the challenge of integrating digital technologies to innovate their business models, products and services, and processes, to avoid continuing suffering loss of growth and the risks becoming less competitive and less relevant in a global marketplace. Therefore, the need for updated digital competencies and know-how to answer to this ongoing quest for innovation has filled the agenda of stakeholders involved in Higher Education, Professional Education and Continuing Education, such as universities, Human Resources departments of fashion companies and local and transnational policy makers.

In particular, partnerships between higher education institutions, fashion enterprises and their socio-economic supply chain can allow to review and fine-tune the design of Fashion-Tech curricula to ensure they are in dialogue with fashion and technology companies to ensure they are responding to industry needs.
The challenge is to co-create shared experiential models among fashion, design, engineering disciplines and fashion, apparel and accessories enterprises.

The paper draws on an ongoing research carried out through "FTalliance. Weaving Universities and Companies to Co-create Fashion-Tech Future Talents", an Erasmus+ KA2 Project co-founded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union (2020-2022) which focuses on a 3-year academia-industries partnership aimed to facilitate the exchange, flow of knowledge and co-creation within the Fashion-Tech sector to boost students’ employability and innovation potential.

The paper will introduce a proposed methodology to evaluate a Fashion-Tech curriculum during focus groups carried out with fashion companies to explore current competences gap in the fashion industry.
Fashion-Tech, Curriculum Design, Digital Technologies, Design Innovation.