The government yesterday announced details of its £80 million research investment to grow and boost the UK’s creative industries, through the formation of nine creative industry clusters that bring together world-class research talent with industry organisations and companies – with UAL leading one of the clusters in an ambitious partnership project that will use R&D to catalyse growth and textile innovation across the UK’s expansive and high value fashion, textiles and technology sector. The Creative Clusters investment builds on the economic success of the UK’s creative industries, already valued at £92 billion annually, aiming to boost jobs and drive the creation of companies, products and experiences that can be marketed around the world.

London College of Fashion has created a short film showcasing the UAL cluster: The Business of Fashion, Textiles and Technology Creative R&D Partnership.

The Business of Fashion, Textiles and Technology Collaborative R&D Partnership is led by  Professor Graeme Evans, UAL and Co-Director Professor Jane Harris, UAL. They are supported by a research team from London College of Fashion and Chelsea College of Arts, UAL in collaboration with UCL, Loughborough University, University of Cambridge, University of Leeds, Queen Mary University London and the V&A – working with other institutions and commercial partners including ASOS, Clarks, British Fashion Council, London Legacy Development Corporation and Centre for Fashion Enterprise.

The Creative Clusters programme was formally launched at the Beyond Conference in London; the research and development conference for the creative industries. Professor Jane Harris took part in a panel event talking about the transformation of fashion and the UAL cluster. Also taking part were UAL Honorary Doctor Jonathan Chippindale, founder of award-winning creative innovation studio Holition and Caroline Rush of the British Fashion Council.

Professor Jane Harris and the panel discussing the transformation of fashion at the Beyond Conference

Professor Jane Harris and the panel discussing the transformation of fashion at the Beyond Conference

Led by the Arts and Humanities Research Council within UKRI, the first-of-its-kind research and development investment will also establish a new Policy and Evidence Centre to look at gaps in the evidence base on the economic strength of the UK’s creative industries.