The NICE consumer
Consumers have a significant part to play in the process of transforming the fashion industry towards more sustainable business models. However, at present, they are limited in their influence by several factors.
The consumer’s awareness of clothing and other fashion products’ impacts on society and the environment is limited. The lack of transparency and access to information about products and their supply-chain limits the possible influence. On top of that there is a scarcity of more sustainable options within the industry.
Because of these facts, it is only natural that the NICE project engages in a consumer focus framework, as the consumers have a pivotal role to play in the transformation and collaboration of a more sustainable fashion industry.
The overall aim of the NICE project is to create increasing awareness on responsible and sustainable business methods in the fashion industry. The consumers are key in the process of forwarding the sustainable fashion agenda, which is why NICE have engaged in a partnership with BSR to tackle the issues on the consumers end. The project will involve key roles for consumers:
- demanding more sustainable options
- making choices about what to buy and whom to buy from
- improving how they care for garments, and
- making decisions about post-consumption such as responsible recycling.
The NICE Consumer project will put forward a vision and a framework for sustainable consumption of fashion. The main focal points and phases of the project constitute:
- Assembling the NICE CONSUMER Advisory Group to contribute to and guide the project.
- Researching how to empower and influence consumer choices and behavior.
- Generating a “NICE CONSUMER change framework” outlining the possible roles and actions by consumers, industry, government and other stakeholders to support sustainable consumption of fashion.
- Running a consultation process to get crowd-sourced input and feedback on the framework.
- Launching the framework and delivering the results to the EU Presidency held by the Danish government in the first half of 2012.
- Promoting the framework during the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development taking place on 20-22 June 2012.
The results of The NICE Consumer framework will be presented and discussed during the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, May 2nd - 3rd 2012. With 800-1000 expected participants the summit is the largest event on sustainable fashion. The Summit was held for the first time in December 2009 attracting almost 700 attendants and is the flagship event of the NICE project which is hosted by the Nordic Fashion Association and chaired by the Danish Fashion Institute.