The year 2021 is a year of challenges. Still under the impact of the COVID19 pandemic. With political changes and tensions across the continents, one senses the unease yet at the same time there are also aspirations to uphold human rights, in different cultures and models of society. The model of sustainable development in its fundamental components: social, environmental, and economic is becoming more urgent and necessary.

The closing of borders, public spaces and workplaces has led to a redefinition of our lifestyle. Fashion is a global industry, which had already been grappling with multiple challenges:

– of a social nature, with the relocation of textile production and manufacturing to countries with less stringent labour laws;
– environmental challenges related to production – due to a high proportion of non-recycled and non-biodegradable raw materials – as well as associated logistics and transport with their reliance on fossil fuels, which have been further aggravated by the rise of online consumption;
– economic challenges, in a two-speed world, more conscientious and less consumption-driven consumers exploring new ways of acquiring and using clothing and accessories such as buying second-hand, renting, exchanging as well as novelty-hungry consumers, with great access to information, who continue to base their choices on impulse, personal satisfaction and the desire to flaunt their status.
These challenges become even more conspicuous in the political, economic, and social situation we are presently experiencing.

In this year of challenges, we invite you to participate in the online Global Fashion Conference from Warsaw, Poland, one of those countries, where Fashion has reflected political, economic, and social changes in very striking ways. « Moda Polska », a state institution, was created in 1958 with the purpose of designing and producing modern, attractive Fashion. The regime hoped that, through its elegance, Polish fashion would stand out.

Polish Fashion had an important influence in East Berlin and beyond, since fashion events were promoted in Western fashion capitals and many women from the political elites of the nations comprising the Soviet Union flocked to Warsaw to buy their wardrobe.

After 1989 Poland is transformed, and the world is also altered because of this process of change. The Berlin Wall falls, Germany is reunified, the Soviet Union splits, and old cultural borders reassert themselves on a new world map. The Poles, who had always displayed great openness and creativity, witnessed the appearance of new, global brands in their country. Many investors saw in Poland the potential of centuries of its textile, clothing, and footwear tradition. With the development of the internet and later the advent of social networks, everything that happened in the world could and did happen in Poland.

Could one find a better place for an international discussion and reflection on the challenges presently facing fashion?

We invite researchers from academia, industry, and professionals from the world of Fashion to take part in the GFC2021. The main goal of the conference is to build a community of professionals who share and exchange knowledge and experiences of a multi-disciplinary nature. For this reason, all contributions from the scientific community and from industry, deriving from different branches of knowledge and perspectives are welcome.

All contributions should be original works that have not been previously presented or published. Proposals may take the form of presentations or works in progress, scientific articles, innovative projects created by companies or business incubators, photographic or video work, as well as pedagogic or demonstration workshops. For each of these types of participation, the appropriate template to be used may be found below on the website of the conference:

The language used in the conference is English. Regarding publication, the use of English is also required, though other languages may be considered in future.

The first proposal to be presented consists of a structured Abstract or storyboard (for photographic or video works) with a clearly identifiable theme for the project/title, scientific references to previous studies, the developed research proposal, and results achieved/conclusions.

Works in progress which already include preliminary results may be submitted. The number of words and images defined should be indicated on each of the specific templates – available on the conference website – according to the type of work to be presented, so that submissions can be accepted for review.

All submissions should be made in Word format (enabling removal of Author identification, thus allowing double blind review) to the e-mail:


Proposals must be related to one or more of the four themes mentioned below:

1. Challenges in the current economic context

– New forms of communication during the period, when conventional solutions like fashion events and fashion shows have become impossible to hold
– International distribution in the new reality
– New approaches to ensuring swift responses, options for more ‘conscientous’ customers
– Rethinking production and marketing strategies
– Strategic approaches to the risk of recession in emerging markets, geopolitical instability, and trade tensions
– New post-pandemic lifestyle and the demand/need for a new fashion supply
– Slow growth and circular economy
– Integration of production and distribution modes

2. Challenges for the sustainable fashion production

– Resources and findings for innovation and technological development
– Adoption of innovation within the industry – from small-scale to the large-scale solution
– The meaning and expressions of made-to-order fashion, slow-fashion, handcrafted fashion, locally-made fashion, fair-made fashion
– Legal ruling for producers and consumers: lobbying, implementation, convergence of intentions
– Circular solutions for mass-produced clothes and for luxury brands
– A second life for products: second hand, vintage, swapping groups and upcycling
– Codes of Conduct and Sustainability Reports
– Human rights and pro-environmental organisations and demonstrations’ contribution to responsible production and consumption

3. Challenges for local fashion in the global world

– Local experience and inspiration vs. international needs and demands
– Local law and practices vs. international agreements
– Effective promotion of “fashion for local fashion”
– Identity, expression of the ‘self’ and fashion
– Local history and heritage as a source of creative fashion solutions
– Crafts and fashion-making in a global world
– Tradition in clothing, social and cultural appropriation and (re)appropriation
– Diversity and inclusion
– Respect for humankind and fashion social media and news

4. Challenges for fashion education

– Use of online classes and workshops – unwanted temporary necessity or long-term solution?
– Need of artistic skills and workshops, as well as business and technological approach – complementary? Or distinct approaches?
– The material and immaterial resources of fashion studies and their role in fashion education – public and private policies, legacies of manual knowledge and oral archives
– Freedom and constraint of fashion courses and education within academic institutions
– Intellectual Property in Fashion
– Technology and Design dialogues
– Education for the youngest generations

Other proposals on each and every one of these four topics are very much welcomed.

Agata Rudnikca-Reichel

University of Łódź – Poland

Agata Szydłowska

Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw – Poland

Agata Zborowska

IKP – University of Warsaw – Poland

Agnieszka Rożnowska-Jasiewicz

Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw – Poland

Aleksandra Jatczak-Repeć

Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw – Poland

Anna Klimczak

Polish-Japanese Academy of Information Technology – Poland

Bogna Dowigałło

University of Gdańsk – Poland

Carlos M. Rodriguez

World Bank & Delaware University – USA

Cláudio Magalhães

Lab Design, NEXT, PUC – Rio de Janeiro – Brazil

Clemens Thornquist

School of Textiles – University of Böras – Sweden

Damien Delille

Université Lyon 2 – France

Dominique Jacomet

IFM – Institut Français de la Mode – Paris – France

Derry Connolly

JP Catholic University – USA

Elaine Ritch

Glasgow Caledonian University – Scotland – UK

Eleni Mouratidou

Université – Paris Nord – France

Ewa Letkiewicz

UMCS – Lublin – Poland

Isabel Cantista

Universidade Lusíada Norte – Portugal

Lylian Berlin

ESPM – Brazil

Małgorzata Wrześniak

UKSW – Warsaw – Poland

Marcin Barburski

Łódź – Politechnika Łódźka – Poland

Marco Pedroni

University of Ferrara – Italy

Rita Salvado

UBI – Portugal

Rui Miguel

UBI – Portugal

Silvia Pérez Bou

ISEM/ Architecture School Univ. Navarra – Spain

Teresa Sádaba

ISEM Fashion Business School – Spain

Ulla Ræbild

Design School Kolding – Denmark

Veronica Manlow

Brooklyn Colllege of the City University of New York – USA

Katarzyna Podgórska-Glonti

University of Poznań – Poland

Kirsi Niinimaki

Aalto University – Finland

Agnieszka Rożnowska-Jasiewicz

Academy of Fine Arts – Warsaw – Poland

Aleksandra Jatczak

Academy of Fine Arts –  Warsaw – Poland

Kirsi Niinimäki

Aalto University – Finland

Isabel Cantista

Universidade Lusíada Norte – Porto – Portugal



The Global Fashion Conference has decided to award two prizes as from the 2020 edition. One of these is intended to acknowledge and reward the best research paper or project in the area of sustainable fashion, while the other prize seeks to acknowledge and reward the best research paper or project in the area of innovation in luxury and fashion. A special mention to a research made in one of these topics or any other topic may also be granted by the jury.

In each edition, an independent jury comprised of representatives from Academia, Industry, NGDOs and Fashion Communication will decide on the assignment of these prizes.


The prize will consist of the attribution of an opportunity to publish in a journal with a high impact factor, or a book sponsored by the Global Fashion Conference with the authors maintaining all rights over the text. The prizes will be awarded at a public ceremony disseminated in the international press. Additional benefits for Authors may be added.


15th of March to 31st May 2021

Submission of Structured Abstracts templates to:

April/May/June/July 2021

Feedback from Reviewers

30th September 2021

Full Papers due 30th September 2021

30th October 2021

Publication of Proceedings

The conference will take place at Academy of Fine Arts – University of Warsaw – Poland – being held live, or streamed according to legal and safety measures adopted internationally on the dates set.