We don’t need more: Fashion – tech responsibility
By WGSN Insider

Don’t bombard the public. Abundance isn’t the key to a better fashion industry – clever, useful, sustainable products are, says WGSN Advisory Board Chair Simon Collins…

Aug 05, 2015


Unless you come from the north of England, you perhaps won’t recognise the pun in this headline (in Sheffield, it sounds like take responsibility) – but the two elements are those which dominate the future of fashion and many other industries: technology and responsibility. And let me be clear from the beginning, I am not talking about pretty gadgets that do a fraction of what your smartphone already does, or using organic cotton to justify making more stuff.

We don’t need more gadgets and we don’t need a million more tee shirts, even if they are organic. What we need is the right kind of tech together with a genuinely responsible approach to the fashion industry.

Or the Worn Again technology from H&M and Kering that allows fibres to be separated for repurposing, beginning to close the loop on fashion. Or Warby Parker’s approach to the simplest of techs – free glasses for those in need, inexpensive for the rest of us. Tech + responsibility – a new business model altogether.

I’m talking about the kind of technology people actually benefit from. Things like the app What3Words which allows those in refugee camps or favelas to have an address for the first time, or the Eye Writer allowing those with ALS to communicate and draw.

Please do me and yourself a favour and don’t look for the white space. Don’t attempt to be disruptive. Don’t crowd source your idea or seek a pivot. Allow your brain to wander till you come across something you are genuinely passionate about.

Take responsibility for what you are creating, be honest about it and what the implications are going to be. Keep It Simple, Brilliance Only, Practice Absolute Consistency, Don’t Be Afraid, Make Friends with People and with Tools. Do The Right Thing and don’t let anyone get in your way. Take a look at the speech about Creative Sedition I gave at WGSN’s Creative Disruption event for more ideas.

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