Now in their 10th year, the Green Gown Awards 2014, recognise the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the UK. With sustainability moving up the agenda, the Awards have established themselves as the most prestigious recognition of best practice within Higher Education.
Iain Patton, Chief Executive of the EAUC who run the awards, commented,
“It is fantastic to see more institutions than ever being finalists – the strength and quality of applications is truly inspiring. The breadth of activity within the sector shows that sustainability really does bring positive impacts, both on the institution, their staff and students and the wider community.”
The impressive list of LCF’s projects that have made the cut include a collaboration with Nike, a clever technical solution to reduce the electrical consumption of one of LCF’s most important pieces of equipment – the humble iron and a brilliant embroidery technician who has been nominated for being a sustainability champion.
Huge congratulations to all involved and we’re keeping our fingers crossed for the awards ceremony which takes place on Monday 3 November 2014 at the stunning Whitworth Hall, The University of Manchester.
Read on to find out more about each of the projects and their nominated category:
Nominated in the category for Courses and Learning “Weaving sustainability through flexible learning fashion courses” was developed by LCF Programme Director Jessica Saunders who has woven her passion and knowledge of sustainable fashion through the flexible (part time) courses in Fashion Media, Design & Realisation, Business, Branding and Visual Merchandising. Students tackle realistic sustainability briefs and study issues of human rights, farming, manufacturing and the retail environment; graduates leave with the skills to change the fashion industry from within.
In the Enterprise category Centre for Sustainable Fashion has been nominated for their collaborative project with global giants Nike. “The Making Project” brought together designers, scientists, coders, academics and students to explore the challenge of how to de-couple successful design from the degradation of nature. The collaboration between Nike, CSF and LCF students and staff helped developed a digital tool to drive innovation, reform design thinking and inform choices for a better world. It developed skills and networks across industry and academia, towards more sustainable business.
In the Research and Development category, Centre for Sustainable Fashion was nominated for “Local Wisdom and Craft of Use” a project led by Professor Kate Fletcher, which explores the ‘craft’ of using garments in resourceful and satisfying ways.The very act of consumption is bound up with our desire for satisfaction – but many people are now questioning whether the act of buying more and more is actually making us happy.Local Wisdom has shown that well-being is enhanced through a re-balancing of our relationship with fashion and encourages us to question our behaviour and find alternatives. Through the stories of over 500 people, in seven cities, Local Wisdom is revealing the hundreds of ways in which this is possible. By thinking about fashion differently it can engender confidence and a real sense of self that reflects personality and enhances individuality. The challenge explored by Local Wisdom is how to pace consumption rather than maximise it.
In the Social Responsibility category London College of Fashion is nominated for “Crafting partnership with St Joseph’s Hospice.” The Widening Participation Unit at London College of Fashion has set up a partnership with St Joseph’s Hospice. LCF staff, students and alumni lead crafting workshops with patients, carers, staff, local residents and schools. Activities include making bags, scarves and jewellery. Pieces made during the workshops have been exhibited at multiple events and are sold to raise money for the hospice.
For Technical Innovation for Sustainability London College of Fashion has been nominated for “Not too many irons in the fire” an innovative new timer switch that reduces electricity consumption through limiting the time irons are left on. This technological solution is paired with an LCF-designed printed ironing board cover to raise awareness of energy consumption in students and staff using the equipment. The project has encouraged dialogue about energy saving and has prompted some staff to recommend that interventions are made regarding other equipment. This initiative is now being considered by other colleges within UAL.
The final nomination is for Sustainability Champion which goes to Rachel Clowes, an Embroidery Technician at London College of Fashion. Rachel champions sustainability through highly visible interventions that are pertinent to a creative university. From saving electricity to increasing biodiversity and pioneering the use of organic calico, she engages community members, students and staff from diverse disciplines. Working with the estates team, for example, resulted in a reduction in electricity consumption at our west London site of 78,000 kWh and 39,000 kg of CO2 over the last 11 months. Rachel’s involvement growing flax and natural dyes with neighbourhood groups instills robust local links, whilst replacing over 2,000m of conventional calico with organic decreases insecticide use in our global society. Both initiatives encourage better-informed students who can positively influence the future of fashion.
- Read more on LCF better lives campaign and projects
- Centre for Sustainable Fashion Projects
- Green Gown Awards 2014 Finalists
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