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Transitions

9 European institutions come together to train young people in the textile sector in sustainability and digitalisation.

The 9 entities represent the triple helix of innovation made up of universities, training schools and business associations. The project is co-financed by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union.

The European textile and fashion industry is currently facing major structural and systemic challenges that require a profound change in model. The new European regulatory framework foresees a more efficient management of textile waste that will also force the development of circularity in the textile and fashion industry in Europe, as well as the acceleration of the digitization of the design, industrial and commercial processes of the sector after the pandemic, These challenges draw a new competitive framework to which companies in the sector must adapt. The textile and fashion industry, which employs 1.3 million people in Europe and generates an aggregate turnover of 143 billion Euros, is made up of more than 140,000 SMEs, many of them small, that need support in addressing the transformation process in which the sector is immersed.

This is why higher education has launched the TRANSITIONS project, a strategic alliance for innovation, which aims to create a collaborative environment in which market as well as textile and design professional needs can be detected, and thus develop new training methods to face the current digital and sustainable transformation.

TRANSITIONS will foster textile and fashion transition by developing new learning methods, tools and practices that help students, young designers and professionals, to face real challenges. To do this, it proposes a multidisciplinary pedagogical approach based on transition design theories, Lean methodology, and disciplines and practices related to textiles, biology and digital manufacturing.

Among the main objectives of the project is the creation of a modular training program based on Industry 4.0 for a new circular system of fashion and textiles; the establishment of training modules focused on innovation and based on real practices and challenges (Transition Labs) that enable training, retraining and improving the skills of students; and the development of new ways of generating innovation in textile and design processes, production and marketing.

The project, which is co-financed by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union, has the participation of research and technological centres – the Institut d’Arquitectura Avançada de Catalunya and Stiftelsen Produktionstekniskt Centrum and Boras For Tekoindustrin Sweden -, Professional Training centers ( FP), higher education institutions – Fundació Privada Elisava, Citta Studi SPA Italy and Stichting Hogeschool Van Amsterdam Netherlands – public policy actors, SMEs and other sectoral organizations from Spain, Italy, Holland and Sweden – Agrupació Catalana del textile i la Moda, Next Technology Tecnotessile Societa Nazionale Di Ricerca R L ItalyStichting New Order of Fashion Netherlands and the City Council of Boras (Sweden).

On the 5th and 6th of October, all members of TRANSITIONS met in Barcelona, at the headquarters of the Fundació Elisava, which leads this project, to start the execution of the project’s activities and to promote the ways of collaboration among the different participating entities. The workdays also included visits to fashion brands such as the Munich footwear company and the facilities of the Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in order to learn about some of their most prominent projects related to the textile industry.

Those responsible for this new alliance are confident that the results of the project will contribute to offering new training alternatives oriented to the transformation needs of the sector and based on a multidisciplinary approach that guarantees the diversity of entities linked to TRANSITIONS.