UAL to champion innovation in the UK fashion industry

The University of the Arts London has been announced as the host of a ‘game-changing’ creative R&D partnership that will aim to deliver innovation within the entire fashion and textile supply chain.


Awarded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as part of the government’s investment in the UK’s creative industries, the programme will provide UAL with funding to support R&D companies and initiatives addressing topics such as sustainable business practice, new retail and consumer experiences, tackling the industry’s reliance on synthetic materials, developing new sustainable materials and building critical mass in new modes of making and manufacturing for fashion and textiles.

“At UAL we welcome this programme as a vote of confidence in the value of creativity, and strategic recognition of the vast social and economic benefits that our fashion and textiles industries generate for the UK. As a world-leader in creative knowledge exchange and research, UAL is proud to put these strengths to work with industry to deliver the innovation and business solutions that will accelerate growth and significant long-term development in this leading UK creative sector,” said Simon Ofield-Kerr, deputy vice-chancellor academic of the University of the Arts London.

More than 40 businesses including luxury brands, online retailers and emerging designers, have signed up to the initiative, which named Professor Graeme Evans from the UAL as Partnership Director. Co-Director is Professor Jane Harris also from the UAL. They will be supported by a research team from the London College of Fashion and Chelsea College of Arts in collaboration with UCL, Loughborough University, University of Cambridge, University of Leeds and Queen Mary University London and the V&A. 

Professor Graeme Evans, UAL said: “UAL is excited to lead on this ambitious project to catalyse growth and innovation among the small and medium-sized enterprises that power our economically and culturally significant fashion, textiles and technology sector. We look forward to working with industry and with university partners, AHRC and our fellow creative industry clusters so that this key sector can secure a sustainable future that thrives in the global marketplace.”

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