Sustainability in fashion industry : strategy and practice
Borovskikh, Violetta (2020)
Pro gradu -tutkielma
School of Business and Management, Kauppatieteet
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This thesis aims to develop a comparative analysis between the Russian and Finnish fashion industry, studying the significant trends in sustainability and customer behavior. The fashion industry has been considered one of the most unsustainable economic sectors due to the negative environmental and societal impacts across the value chains, mainly in developing countries. Regarding consumer behavior, the prices of fashionable goods have fallen and become so affordable that a significant trend of consumers is that people no longer seriously think about whether to buy something or not. However, at the same time, one can observe the growing importance of sustainability in the fashion industry, mainly enhanced by conscious consumers and the growth of innovative practices of sustainable fashions and slow fashion business models. In order to proceed with the research, I conducted qualitative exploratory research focused on a comparative case study analysis based on primary data obtained by in-deep interviews and surveys, and expert assessments. A survey was conducted among consumers on the topic of awareness of sustainable development and personal attitude to this concept, as well as where it is located in their opinion on the pyramid of Maslow's hierarchy of human needs. We finally discuss three main findings: the importance of cultural differences influencing sustainable business models, the impact of different needs of customers and the influence of customer behavior, and the impact of different types of sustainable business projects.